How to replace a kitchen faucet

Got a kitchen faucet that you need replaced? Then don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place.

Research has shown that standard kitchen faucets last about 15 years. However, damages and other unforeseen circumstances could also arise and necessitate a replacement.

The task of removing an old kitchen faucet can be a bit of a daunting one. Most people say the most difficult part is getting rid of the old one.

There are some unexpected issues that might pop up when replacing a faucet, including but not limited to insufficient access to fittings, nuts that are difficult to reach and pipes getting really corroded. Most times, the instructions that come with the faucet are actually what you need to get the job done. This means that without the occurrence of any unforeseen circumstances, you should be done in about an hour.

With this piece, you’ll see how to replace a kitchen faucet easily and without any stress. 

​Which Tools you need

Now, to get this project done, it is important for you to get the following tools at the ready:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Pire wrench
  • Slip joint pliers
  • 4-in-1 screwdriver
  • Handsaw
  • Tube cutter
  • Hammer
  • Wrench set

Get the shutoff valves

If you will like to replace a kitchen faucet, one of the first things to do is look under the sink and ensure that the faucet is being fed by shutoff valves.

Don’t have shutoff valves? Then add them.

If you do, confirm that they are functional. You can do this by turning on the cold and hot water at the faucet. Then, shut the valves off.

If the faucet is still dripping, then you need new valves.

Supply tubes

Next, make sure to measure the existing supply tubes and get a set of stainless steel supply tubes. These tubes have been designed to provide rupture-free service. In addition, you can rot them around obstacles without experiencing any kinking.

Basin wrench

A basin wrench is also very important. It helps to remove and install the fasteners that clamp the older faucet assemblies to the sink.

Basin wrenches have spring-loaded jaws that help to achieve a pivot. When you have this pivot, you can tighten or loosen the nut easier. This will come in handy, especially in places that are tight and hard to reach.

A pipe wrench or slip-joint pliers will also help with ditching the drain lines so as to access the faucet. In addition, a tubing cutter will help you to cut through copper tubes. However, if your copper supply lines are located at just a few inches from the cabinet’s back, then you will be better served by a mini tube cutter.

Quick Tips

✅  ​A set of open-end wrenches will also be essential for hooking up and disconnecting the water lines.

✅  ​Take a picture of the entire layout before disconnecting the drain lines. Doing this will help you to put it all together.

Gain access to the sink

The next step in how to replace a kitchen faucet is to look for a way to access the faucet.

Usually, the major obstacles will be the P-traps and pipes that drain the sink. You can pull them out, but don’t be afraid to have them replaced. If your drain lines are older and plated with chrome, you might have a challenge with corrosion. Also, if you have plastic drain parts, then take care when removing them. You just might need them later.

Quick Tip

☑  ​For your safety, make sure that you’re pulling on the proper gear. An apron- as well as safety goggles- will definitely do you good.

Remove the old fauce

replace a kitchen faucet

Here, the first step is to disconnect the water supply lines. If you are replacing defective shutoff valves or your water pipes, then cut the house’s water supply. From there, use a tube cutter or hacksaw to cut off the pipes under the connections.

This is the most important step in how to replace a kitchen faucet. Also, ensure that the new valves are closed before the water is back on.

Install the new faucet

Simply follow the instructions you are given to get this done. The instructions will usually differ depending on the manufacturer is. However, the underlying techniques are usually the same. When you’re done, simply remount the sink and hook the water lines up as they should be.

Quick Tip

☑️  ​Ensure that you have the faucet set before replacing the sink on the countertop.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

How easy is it to replace the kitchen faucet?

The task is not a complicated one, but it depends on the extent of the damages. In some cases, you will face unexpected problems such as broken pipes, or even those that have undergone corrosion. There are instances where the nuts are hard to reach, and in others, the initial connection was done poorly.

In all these cases, you may conclude that it is not an easy process to do the replacement. However, the work is manageable, except for the few challenges due to time and installation settings.

How long does it take to complete the task?

It should not take you more than one hour to complete the task. However, it mostly depends on the parts that you are replacing. Replacing a leaking or an outdated faucet is not difficult. The process also does not require one to use complicated tools, rather a basin wrench and other available tools can work.

Replacing the old tap will follow the same procedure as when you are installing a new one.

If replacing the faucet involves removing the entire sink, then the process will consume more time.

Do you need a plumber to do the work?

It depends on your level of expertise. If you can handle the work by yourself, then you do not need one. However, you may need to outsource the service if the task is huge for you.

I would advise you to get one when installing a new one, but for replacement, follow the instructions manual.

There is an exception to this task. If the work will have to involve plumbing works, then you will have to hire a licensed plumber to handle that part.

Do I need to caulk the faucet after replacement?

When installing a new faucet, or even doing a replacement, there will be gaps between it and the sink. A lot of water will be lost through such means. It is, therefore, important to do the caulking so as to save on water loss.

Most of them come with a rubber gasket that helps to prevent leaks. In some cases, however, these gaskets could be missing or even faulty.

When such cases happen, you will have to use caulk to seal the gaps. Alternatively, you can even choose to buy a new set of rubber gaskets.

How much does a plumber charge for the replacement?

You can always negotiate for the best price with the service provider. The cost varies from region to another, and also with the amount of work. Some plumbers charge depending on the amount of time that they spend at your place.

You may even get charges for removing the old faucet, and for re-installing a new one! In most cases, the price ranges from $150 to $300.

Why does it leak at the base?

The water could be seeping through the gaps. Examine the O ring as it could have dried up or even crack. When the cartridge also wears out, it will start letting water through it. To cure this problem, you will have to caulk the base or even replace the parts.

​Final Verdict

So there you have it. The entire process of replacing a faucet is actually easy, and these steps will definitely show you the ropes.

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