How to Properly Install a Kitchen Faucet
At one point or another, every homeowner is faced with the need to change a kitchen faucet. It could be because of wear and tear, a completely broken faucet, or just looking to upgrade. If you’re in this situation and are looking for a complete and actionable guide on how to change kitchen faucets or how to install kitchen faucets, you’re in the right place.
In this article, we will cover all that you need to know from choosing a replacement kitchen faucet to a step-by-step of the actual installation process.
Important: Even a simple DIY project like replacing kitchen faucets comes with risks. Certain errors may cause flooding or structural damages that could increase your costs. In this case you always have the choice to call in an expert plumber – especially if the installation becomes too challenging or time-consuming.
Without further ado, let’s begin!
Choosing a New Faucet
There are two main considerations when it comes to replacing kitchen faucets. The first is determining the kind of kitchen faucet that would best suit your preferences, and the second is whether or not you will need a new sink to match (and if you are willing to shell out that added cost).
Main Types of Kitchen Faucets
Pull-Out and Pull-Down Faucets
As is implied by the name, this type of kitchen faucet has one handle which is usually a lever that can be switched side to side or up and down. One handle controls both hot and cold water. This simple and straightforward kitchen faucet is a popular choice in many homes.
This type of kitchen faucet has two handles that are mostly cylinder-shaped. Typically, each handle is assigned to either cold water or hot water. This style of kitchen faucet is associated with country style kitchens.
Not only does this type of kitchen faucet give added convenience but it also helps to save water and also allows for more hygienic kitchen operations by not requiring you to touch faucet handles at all. Hands-free faucets use motion-detecting technology so that you can control when water is supplied. However, these kinds of kitchen faucets usually do not have an option for hot water.
These types of faucets are equipped with a head/sprayer that can be pulled out or down. Pull-down faucets typically have a goose-neck type of spout and would need to be pulled downwards to be used. Meanwhile, pull-out faucets have a head/sprayer that can be pulled out in a straight line towards you.
Both of these faucet types are popular choices because they offer numerous benefits, such as:
- Added ease in washing larger objects
- Ability to rinse the entire sink thoroughly
- Ability to fill up a container with water without it needing to be inside the sink
However, one should be careful in purchasing these types of faucets because faulty weights found in substandard models can cause the head/sprayer to dangle.
To Buy or Not to Buy a New Sink
Not all faucets and sinks are compatible with each other. It all boils down to the number of mounting holes. A compatible sink should have enough mounting holes for the faucet of your choice. As an example, a double-handle faucet would typically need three mounting holes – one for the spout and two for the handles.
Keep in mind that any additional accessories that you choose to add to the faucet (e.g. air gap, soap dispenser) would also need their own mounting holes.
For some faucet types (particularly double-handle faucets), it’s crucial that you know the “spread” of the sink; this is the distance between the centre of the first hole to the centre of the third hole. If the spread is six inches or more, you would need to get a widespread faucet. Once you have this measurement, however, you can always ask for help from an employee to make sure that you get the right faucet.
Preparation For Faucet Installation
In order to prepare for faucet installation, make sure to do the following:
- Clear out any objects from under the sink
- Shut off any electrical outlets under the sink while installation and faucet testing is taking place
- Prepare a basin and towels to catch water or dry the area as needed
- Prepare a flashlight for better visibility
- Wear protective goggles so that debris cannot get into your eyes
- You can opt to have a pillow under your back for added comfort during the installation process
Part 1: Disconnecting The Old Faucet
Once you’re prepared, follow along these steps to disconnect your old faucet:
- Shut off the two water supply valves that are under the sink by turning them in a clockwise direction
- Open the faucet to drain the remaining water
- Disconnect the supply line connections from the supply lines using an adjustable wrench to loosen the nuts. Make sure to have the basin underneath as you disconnect them so that any remaining water is caught in the basin
- Next, disconnect the supply line connections from the mounting hardware of the faucet itself. Though configurations can vary depending on your faucet type, you will be able to easily identify the nuts that you need to remove
- Once the supply line connection is completely disconnected, set it aside.
- You can now remove the mounting hardware that is keeping your faucet attached to the sink.
- The faucet can now lift out of the sink and you’re ready to install a new kitchen faucet.
- Clean and dry the area thoroughly before proceeding to part 2.
Part 2: Installing a New Faucet
- Put the faucet lines through the mounting holes. If you’ve bought the right faucet, each component (e.g. spout, handles, accessories) should have a corresponding mounting hole on the sink.
- Next, install the mounting hardware underneath the faucet so that it is securely attached to the sink.
- Now you can connect the faucet to the water supply lines. This may look a bit different depending on the type of faucet that you have:
- For single-handle faucets, hands-free faucets, pull-down faucets, and pull-out faucets, all the supply line connections will point towards one mounting hole – the one connecting to the spout.
- For double-handle faucets, however, the supply line connections will lead separately towards the direction of the mounting hole for each handle.
- Once the faucets are securely connected to the water supply line, open your water supply lines and test your faucet. Make sure that there aren’t any leaks.
Faucet and/or Sink Installation for Your Property
Replacing or installing a kitchen faucet takes careful planning and a good amount of time and effort. As with all plumbing DIYs, there is always a risk of making mistakes like buying the wrong parts or damaging something during installation. This is why many homeowners choose to entrust this task to an expert plumber.
PlumbWize is a trusted provider of residential and commercial plumbing services. We make sure to deliver top-notch professional plumbing services to all our customers and are known for our prompt response and long-lasting plumbing installations. There is no job that’s too small or too big for us to handle. If you’re looking for help on how to change kitchen faucets, we would be happy to take care of everything for you.