A loose kitchen faucet usually causes water to start leaking onto the floor. The dripping sound is irritating, especially at night when you’re trying to get some sleep.
Besides that, the leakage results in a wastage of water. And at the end of it all, you’re left with a big water bill to pay.
It’s very annoying to cough out money for water that you didn’t spend.You can opt to call a plumber to come and fix the faucet,but that will also cost you because he will not repair the tap for free.
Tightening a kitchen faucet is not rocket science. You can actually fix it on your own by following the instructions outlined in this article and save money. It will only take you about 45 minutes to repair the faucet.
Tracing the Leak
It’s hard to spot where the water is leaking from when the faucet is still open. You should start by turning the faucet off. Observe the underneath of the countertop because that’s where the pipes are.
The sink drainage should be covered with a plug or a piece of cloth to prevent the parts of the faucet from being flushed down the drain.
This includes the screws and washers. In most cases, the leak can be traced to the base or the handle.
Tools Needed for the Job
- Flash light
- Adjustable wrench
- Basin wrench
- Flathead screwdriver
- Masking tape
- Hex head wrench set
Kitchen Faucet Handle
Open Sink Cabinet
If the faucet is mounted to the countertop, the handles can only be reached by opening the cabinet below.
In case there are things in the cabinet, they should be removed to create room for navigation.
If the things that are kept in the cabinet are not removed, it will be difficult for you to repair the handles because they will be out of reach.
Open the Handle
When you take a good look at the faucet, you will notice that there is a screw that has a recessed hex head, or a decorative cap that is at the top of the handle.
If your faucet has two handles, each of them will have a decorative cap that’s marked ‘hot’ and ‘cold’. Sometimes it’s difficult to tighten the setscrew if you’re not able to reach the ON and OFF position.
In such a case, you should insert the head of the hex wrench into the setscrew and turn the screws until they can’t turn anymore.
Apply Masking Tape
If you can’t identify the setscrews, you must spread masking tape beneath the decorative caps. This will stop water from leaking when the faucet has been turned off.
And for the best results, the masking tape should not go beyond the edges of the caps because it will eventually be worn out.
This is because it’s made from a light material that can be easily damaged by grinding it against the edges.
The decorative caps can be removed using a flathead screwdriver. The head of the screwdriver should be inserted at the edges of the caps and then lowered to lift them up.
You should deal with one handle at a time to guarantee efficiency.Once the cap is out of its place, you should tighten the screw below and put the cap back.
The masking tape should be peeled back when you’re done. The “on” valves should be activated so that water can run through.
Kitchen Faucet Base
Clear the Kitchen Cabinet
A congested kitchen will make your job harder. Therefore, you should create space by taking everything that’s in the cabinet out. This will let you get to where the valves are.
Enter the Kitchen Cabinet
Since you can’t stand or kneel in the cabinet, you should lie on the floor, on your back and push yourself inside. In fact, it’s only the upper body that will be inside the cabinet.
The inside of the cabinet is usually dark and that’s why you need a flashlight so that you can see what you’re doing.It may also be wise to wear eye protection in case of falling debris.
Open Faucet Base
The light should be directed towards the base of the faucet. The wrench should be adjusted to the appropriate width and placed on the hose of the base. Turn the wrench counter-clockwise to open it.
Once you have opened the base, you should replace the washers if they are torn. If the rings above them are not tight, you should tighten themand close the base. Turn the faucet on to see whether the leak is still there.