A dripping bathtub faucet can increase your monthly water bill. In many cases, people turn the faucet handles tighter and inadvertently shred the seals yet further. In most cases, you can repair broken washers, gaskets, and seals by yourself with a few special tools.
How to Fix a Leaky Bathtub Faucet
Part1: Disassembling the Faucet
Step 1: Gather the necessary tools.
Among the tools you will need are a monkey wrench, bath socket wrench, vice grip pliers, flat-head screwdriver, Phillips screwdriver, jar gripper, plumber’s grease, a rag, Teflon tape, and possibly tub caulk. Possibly a hair dryer will be needed as well.
Step 2: Shut off the water supply to your house.
The pipes will need to be accessible for the next hour or so. Make sure your family and tenants are aware that water will not be available during this time.
Step 3: Turn on both the hot and cold faucets in the bathtub.
This will drain any remaining water.
Step 4: Put a Phillips head screwdriver in the hole and unscrew the handle.
With time, handles can corrode and secure the faucet. If necessary, use a hand dryer to warm up the handle.
Do not force it too hard or it will break. In case it breaks or will not come off, call a plumber.
Step 5: Remove the collar and trim from the wall by hand.
The trim is the decorative piece that is attached to the outside of the faucet, usually behind the handle, while the collar is a tubular piece that extends around the inner components. This part should be easily unscrewed. If necessary, you can use a hair dryer to loosen it. If your tub has two handles, repeat the process for the other.
Step 6: Place the faucet handle inserts, faucet handles, screws, trim, and collar parts aside.
Once you are done fixing the faucet, you will need to reconnect them similarly.
Step 7: Remove the stem bonnet, which is the packing nut that secures the stem.
Turn a wrench counterclockwise to install. They are sometimes called “cartridges.” When you are unable to locate a bath socket wrench, use a vice grip to hold onto the stem bonnet and loosen it.
Step 8: Place the seat wrench in the opening where the faucet was.
To remove the seat, you turn it counterclockwise after you have stuck it deep into the seat. It has an elongated end, so you can stick it deep into the seat. The seat of the faucet is the back portion that extends into the pipe.
Part 2: Replacing the Parts
Step 1: Locate the defective parts.
Look at the parts that you removed earlier. Identify the component that needs replacement. It is best to replace all the wearable parts on the hot and cold faucet valves in order to fix the leak.
Step 2: Find replacement parts.
Take your old ones to a hardware store or home center. Bringing your old parts with you will ensure you purchase the correct replacements since there are thousands of replacement parts available. There may be times when the parts need to be purchased from a plumbing supplies distributor.
If you’re purchasing the parts before taking apart the faucet, buy a kit with an assortment of washer sizes. Having the appropriate size on hand will increase your chances of getting the right one.
Step 3: Start by replacing the parts inside the stem bonnet.
There are two ways to replace the faucet washers: to change the whole stem and bonnet section, or to replace just the washers. Before screwing back on each new part, grease it with plumber’s grease.
Step 4: Replace the seat washer.
Unscrew the screw holding the seat washer onto the seat. Remove the rubber seat washer. Replace the washer and screw after grease is applied.
With the seat wrench, tighten the seat back into place. Tighten it by hand. It should be tight but still easy to remove.
Step 5: Change the bonnet washer.
Disconnect the bonnet washer from the end of the bonnet. Grease and replace the bonnet washer.
Step 6: Change the packing nut.
Take it off by unscrewing the nut in the center of the stem bonnet. You will need a flat-headed screwdriver to pry away the rubber packing washer from the nut. Insert the stem into the bonnet by greasing the threads in the front of the stem.
Step 7: Change the packing washer.
Put your greased packing washer in front of your greased packing nut.
Step 8: Replace the bonnet.
Use pipe joint compound on the threads of the bonnet. You can use a bath socket wrench or vice grip to tighten the bonnet.
Step 9: Replace the handles, screws, collars, and faucet inserts.
Repeat on the opposite side to replace parts in the other handle.
Step 10: Turn on the water again and test your repair.
It is advisable to contact a plumber if you suspect a new leak.
5 Best Bathtub faucet
- Delta Faucet TUB SPOUT
- Moen Eva High-Arc Roman
- Kingston Brass Vintage Clawfoot
- DANCO Universal
- Delta Faucet Single Function Kit
What causes a leaking faucet?
The most common cause of leaky faucets is a worn washer. When the water is turned on and off, the washer is pressed against the valve. This will eventually wear it down, causing it to harden, crack, and leak.
However, leaks can also be caused by faulty stems or cartridges, or by rusty handles. Make sure to prepare for at least one of these parts to need replacing.
Leaky faucets: When to replace rather than repair?
Faucet Is 10 to 20 Years Old
A faucet that is more than ten or twenty years old may have other issues. Eventually, after another section has failed, the faucet will stop working, much like an old car. At some point, it will be easier and less costly to buy a new one.
It takes too long for repairs
A leaky faucet should be repaired in about half an hour. Don’t spend hours fixing your bathroom or kitchen faucet. It may be better to replace the faucet if you have been working on it for over an hour.
Repairs are too expensive
Consider the cost of repairs and the cost of replacement. The cost of repairing an inexpensive faucet may not be worth it unless only a few washers are worn out. It is usually worth repairing an expensive faucet.
As the most expensive component of the faucet, the cartridge is typically the deciding factor. Generally, faucet cartridges cost between $10 and $50, with a few costing between $50 and $100.
The repairs aren’t working
A faucet is a mechanical device that is constantly used, so it isn’t expected to last forever. When you cannot fix a dripping faucet on your own, it’s usually time to replace it with a new one.
When Professional Help Is Needed
A plumber can repair most leaky faucets, plus they can replace them if needed. Although most homeowners can repair or replace kitchen and bathroom faucets on their own, plumbers can do the job if it is cumbersome or complicated.
Plumbers are expensive, even if they only need to work for a short time to fix a faucet. Think about the cost of hiring a plumber in comparison with the cost of buying a new faucet before making a call.