Whether you need a 3-hole widespread, a 1-handle deck mount pull-down, or 2-handle widespread, there are as many faucets to choose from as there are people on this planet. Whether in your bathroom, kitchen, or workroom, installing a new faucet can dramatically change your room’s look. It can take transform your space from dated to modern. It can be a DIY job if you’re just replacing the fixture. But beyond merely changing any plumbing work should be left to a licensed plumber such as Nick’s Plumbing and Sewer Services.
What do you need to know to install a new faucet?
1. How many openings or holes does your current faucet use?
Typically, your current faucet will either mount into one opening and have a level handle that turns the water on and off. Or it will mount into three holes with the faucet, the hot water handle, and the cold-water handle each having their own opening.
If you have the first one, you can easily choose any faucet that mounts into one hole. If you’ve got the latter, you’ll have to choose a faucet that fits into three. Often there’s an adapter plate that’s included with many of these faucets as well.
2. How long does it take to install?
It can be a pretty rapid process, or it can take half a day to accomplish. Usually, the hardest part is removing the old faucet since the connections can become corroded, making it hard to remove. The installation process of the new faucet tends to be the quicker part of the process. There is usually an instruction manual also included.
3. What tools do I need to install my new faucet?
The tools that you’ll need are relatively basic and are already available at most big box hardware stores.
- Adjustable wrench
- Thread seal tape
- Plumber’s putty
4. What should I look for when buying a faucet?
The essential element you need to keep on the lookout for is the quality of construction. A common source of leaks in faucets is in the washers and springs. The higher quality faucets use a washerless cartridge construction, which eliminates these common causes for leaking.
You also want to get a feel for the handle. This may sound a bit odd, but it’s not to be overlooked. With the number of times you pull the faucet’s handle to turn the water on and off, you’ll want it to feel pleasant to the touch. If the water doesn’t respond evenly with how you pull the handle, it won’t ever feel right, and that can get very annoying. Before you know it, you’ll find yourself looking for a replacement faucet.
Before installing your new faucet
1. Always shut off the water before starting the installation
Before you begin your work, REMEMBER to shut off the water to your existing faucet. Most of the time, this is easy to do, and it’s accomplished by simply turning the ON/OFF valves located on the hot and cold-water supply lines.
If your existing faucet is several years old, be prepared for the valves to be rusted and stuck. They may be challenging to budge. Apply heat to the valve with a hairdryer to loosen the valve enough so that you can close it. You can also use pliers to grab the valve and gently coax it to the OFF position. But be aware that all this twisting and pressure could break the valve and the supply line, which could result in water shooting out and flooding the area around your faucet. So that’s maybe why you’ll need to shut off your home’s main water valve. It’s usually located outside where the water line enters your house.
2. Installing your new faucet is trickier than it sounds.
The majority of the instruction manuals say that once the water is off, removing the old faucet is simply a matter of loosening the nuts that hold it in place and lifting the faucet out of the holes. However, removing it rarely goes that easily. The space under the sink where the faucet attaches is often narrow, and because of where it’s situated is pitch black. You’ll need a powerful work light to illuminate the area and an adjustable wrench to loosen the nuts.
Like the shutoff valves, the nuts that hold the faucet in place can be stuck or rusted. If you encounter this problem, try sweeping away as much of the rust and corrosion as possible using a wire brush. Then spray penetration oil and wait the recommended time to help dissolve the corrosion. It can take from 30 minutes to overnight for the oil to work. You might just reach a point where you’ve waited for enough, and you decide to call the plumber, that’s okay!
3. Be gentle to your back.
Of all the DIY projects that you undertake in your home, few are as tough on your body as installing a new faucet. Whether it’s your kitchen, bathroom, or laundry room, trying to wiggle into the confined space under a sink to see where the faucet is attached is incredibly tough on your back. On top of it, you’re also lying across an uneven surface, which is the inside surface of the cabinet. It is generally only a few inches higher than the bathroom, laundry room, or kitchen floor. You can be in the best of shape, but to contort your back in those different positions is especially tricky and never feels good.
Yet there is a simple handy-man trick to ease this discomfort. Insert a small sheet of plywood inside whatever cabinet you’re laying on. The layer should be narrow enough to fit through a door’s opening, but wide enough to lay on and long enough to support your back and bum. Using six to eight quart-size cans of paint to support the end of the plywood sheet extends out into the room. This should provide a flat surface on which to lie as you replace the faucet.
4. Recognize your limits
There are times when you just can’t get under a sink far enough to get a clear path to reach the hardware holding the old faucet in place. Suppose it appears as though you’ll have to remove additional plumbing like the sink drain trap or, for instance, with the kitchen sink the garbage disposal unit. In that case, an anticipated two-hour job can quickly become a two-hour an all weekend plumbing project. When do you need to stop and consider what is more important, doing this job yourself or your sanity? May it be time to call in a plumber? Attempting to call a plumber rather than trying to remove and then reinstall additional plumbing parts yourself might be the safest plan forward.
How much does it cost to install a new faucet?
Plumbing can be complicated, but a qualified professional should be able to quickly and efficiently install a new fixture. The cost to install a faucet is about $244, with an average range between $154 and $335, depending on a few variables.
What affects the cost of the faucet installation?
One would think that installing a new faucet is simple. However, there are many things you need to consider, not to mention those unexpected problems that may arise. Some major cost definers to remember are:
1. The condition of the current faucet:
Suppose your existing faucet is rusted or in overall bad shape. In that case, it may be difficult to remove and could potentially damage the plumbing lines. This could be especially concerning if it is rusted, which means it’s probably stuck and might need to be cut out.
The price will vary depending on whether you will install a kitchen, bathroom, or bathtub faucet.
If you decide to upgrade with a filtration system or lighting, you will pay more for the installation.
If the existing connectors or mountings are damaged, you will need to pay them to be repaired or replaced.
5. Plumbing Condition:
If your plumbing does not meet standard plumbing code, you might need to have it repaired before installation.
6. Water control & efficiency:
If you choose a faucet that is not built to handle the current water control setup, you will need to have the water control adjusted.
What types of faucet installation services do you offer?
When you think about faucets, you might just envision your kitchen or your bathroom. But at Nick’s Plumbing and Sewer Services, we install a wide range of installation services, including the following:
- Hot water dispensers
- Bathtub faucets
- Wet bar faucets
- Utility sink faucets
- Bathroom faucets
- Kitchen faucets
Sure, changing the faucets in your kitchen, bathroom, or laundry room seems simple enough, but often, what appears simple to do can quickly get complicated. That’s why at Nick’s Plumbing and Sewer Services, we highly recommend that you carefully consider the steps that need to be taken before you start a job like this. If you have any hesitation, give us a call. We’d be more than happy to come out and give you a hand.
We look forward to hearing from you!