Replacing a Sink Faucet

April 9th 2002

With occasional internal repairs, a modern faucet unit will last for many years. Eventually though, it may reach the point of no repair, or the exterior coating may become worn or corroded. Replacement is not difficult.

Turn off the stop valves for both hot and cold water supply lines leading to the fittings. If there are no stop valves, turn of the closest valves in the lines between the faucet and the water heater and cold water supply. If necessary turn off the main valve, shutting off all the water in the house. Open the faucet to drain out as much water as you can.

A basin wrench will save you a lot of trouble, especially behind a deep kitchen sink where pliers or other wrenches wonít go. Us it first to remove the nuts holding the supply lines to the faucet, then to remove the hexagonal nuts that hold the faucet to the sink. The old faucet is then simply lifted out.

Take the old faucet with you when you are shopping for a new one. This will assure that you get the correct replacement size. If this is impractical, carefully measure centre-to-centre distances between pipes and note pipe diameters.

Check the new faucet for fit in the actual installation, nuts and washers will be beneath the sink. Wipe the tope of the sink clean where the faucet will be installed. Most exposed deck faucets (the deck is the part that conceals the various inner components) have a rubber gasket on the bottom. If your new one does not, put a ring of plumberís putty on the sink around the perimeter where it will be placed. Set the faucet in place, slip the washers over the faucet shanks from beneath the sink and turn the nuts onto the shanks, starting them with your fingers and tightening with the basin wrench. Then reconnect the supply lines, adjusting them as necessary to fit the new faucet. Turn on the water and check all connections for leakage.