How to Fix a Leaky Bathtub Faucet – Detailed Guide

You may have noticed a leak or a drip coming from your bathtub faucet. Maybe it is a reason for your concern because you know that the water bill might increase while also leaving an unappealing stain.

However, you don’t really need to worry about calling in a plumber to fix the leaky bathtub faucet. Here are some easy steps by which you could easily tackle this issue and enjoy your precious bathtub with a functional faucet.

What causes a faulty faucet?

The main reasons of a faulty or leaky faucet are:

·         Loose parts

·         Mineral build up

·         Wear and tear

·         Corrosion

How to fix a leaky bathtub faucet?

Usually, there are 2 types of bathtub faucets – single handle faucet and double handle faucet. The process of fixing the faucet is similar but for a double handle faucet, you need to find out which part is leaking otherwise you may have to fix the faucet twice.

Fixing a leaky bathtub faucet is quite easy to do. All you would need are some tools and then you have to follow some steps. You should start the process by turning off the water supply of your bathroom.

Tools needed:

·         Philips screwdriver

·         Hairdryer

·         Flathead screwdriver

·         A faucet wrench

·         Monkey wrench

·         Vice grip pliers or bath socket wrench

The steps for fixing the faucet:

1.       At first you have to locate the screw of the handle that you would find at the end of a handle. There may be a decorative cover and you have to remove this by a flathead screwdriver that exposes the screw.

2.       Take a Phillips screwdriver and remove the holding screw in the handle. While removing the handle, you may feel that the handle is stuck. Don’t try to remove it by force. Pour some hot water or heat it using a hair dryer to loosen the handle.

3.       You may find a decorative collar just behind the handle. The collar may be fitted on the internal side of the faucet which is unscrews and threaded. You should remove both parts if you find them.

4.       You have to remove the packing nuts by using a vice grip or a socket wrench. Turn the nuts counter clockwise to remove it.

5.       The stem of the bathtub faucet could be taken by gripping the stem with pliers. While pulling it, turn it from each side to loosen the stem first.

6.       You should check on the packing nuts and stem for mineral deposit, damage and corrosion. If you find out the part that’s worn, replacing the parts would be good.

7.       Now you need to remove any mineral deposit that builds up in the stem or nuts. Pour white vinegar on the parts and let it soak for a few minutes. After that, rinse off everything properly.

8.       You would find the washer on the lowest part of the stem that assembles on a seat. It is a tiny tube-shaped component which sits inside your faucet. The seat could get damaged if the washer wears. Remove this by using a seat wrench.

9.       After pointing out the parts that should be replaced, you need to go to the hardware or plumbing store to buy new parts. It is better to take old parts to ensure you buy the right one for the faucet. Sometimes, you need to change the whole stem.

10.   If you find that you have to change the seat washer, don’t get panicked. It is an easy process. You would find a screw that secures the washer and you should unscrew it, remove the old washer. Place the new washer and again screw it accurately.

11.   At last you should reassemble all the parts by reversing the steps. If you have a double handle faucet, do like the previous one for the second handle.

12.   Turn off the water supply and check if you have fixed the faucet correctly. If you find any leakage, it is the best to call the plumber.

This article may be useful for anyone who wants to stop the dripping noise, save the extra money and to prevent unsightly stains over the bathtub.

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