How to Replace a Two Handled Faucet

Replacing a two handled faucet in your kitchen or bathroom is an easy way to update the overall appearance of the room or rid yourself of a troublesome leak for good. While a plumber could do the job for you, there are many faucet sets that can be installed by the careful homeowner. If you decide to replace your two handled faucet, just follow these easy steps for success.

You should begin by removing the old two handled faucet by removing the supply lines. This tutorial assumes that you have rigid supply lines connecting the water to the faucet. These supply lines are often made of copper and must be handled carefully to prevent kinks. If you have flexible supply lines instead be aware that the process is much the same, but your connectors may be different from the ones discussed here.

To remove the supply lines, first turn off the water to using the shutoff valve. Once the water is off, turn the handles in the on position to remove any water pressure. Next you want to use an adjustable wrench to remove the nut that attaches the supply lines to the shutoff valves. You should then remove the nuts that attach the supply line to the two handled faucet. Then lift the supply lines out and save them for later, being careful not to accidentally bend them.

With the supply lines removed you can then lift of the old two handled faucet. Discard this fixture and remove as much of the old plumbing putty around the fixture as possible. To do this begin with a putty knife and remove any residue with steel wool or a cleanser, depending on the sink material.

With the remnants of the old two handled faucet removed, you can now install the new one. Keep in mind that you will need a new fixture that makes use of a three hole configuration. However, this does not mean that you must install a two handled faucet; there are many other options that include a spray hose or simply extend the faucet bottom plate to cover unneeded holes.

Once your new faucet is chosen, there are two separate methods of installing. If you have a faucet that has a desk gasket that creates a seal between the faucet and the sink, you should place the gasket in the place you think the faucet will be. Then you should thread any supply lines or hoses through the holes in the sink and place the fixture in its new location, making sure that the holes, gasket, and faucet all line up. Other types of faucets will not have a gasket. In this case you should use plumber’s putty to make a seal between the faucet and the kitchen sink.

With the above the sink part of the fixture in place, you can then work underneath the sink. To begin you should attach the lock nuts to the bottom of the faucet. Screw them on with a wrench and be aware that there should be some sort of nut for each of the three holes, depending on your faucet type. Make sure that the nuts are tightened enough to make the fixture secure and scrap away any excess plumber’s putty that you see.

Now you can replace the supply lines. Be aware you may have to bend them slightly to make them fit. If this is the case, you should purchase a pipe bender from a home improvement store. This will prevent any accidental kinks when you install the copper pipes. Keep in mind that each connection to the supply lines should be made with a coupling nut and a compression ring. You should tighten these nuts into place by hand, but give them a quarter turn with a wrench to ensure the proper tightness.

If your new fixture has a kitchen spray hose, you should be able to connect the end of the hose to a fitting located between the two supply hoses on the faucet end. With everything installed, you should remove the aerator on the end of the faucet. (The aerator is the fitting with a piece of screen on the end of the faucet that can sometimes become clogged.) Then turn on the shutoff valves and the faucet. You should then check for leaks. If there are leaks, tighten the fittings and make other adjustments until the leaks stop. Once you are certain that there are no leaks, you should replace the aerator on the fixture.

Replacing a faucet is an easy job, but probably best completed by the homeowner with some basic knowledge of plumbing. If you aren’t sure where the shutoff valves for your sink water supply are located and how to turn them off, than this job probably isn’t for you. For less adventurous homeowners, you should keep in mind that a plumber will be able to do the job in less than an hour.

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