There are a few types of single handle kitchen faucets. But irrespective of the one you have, fixing it when it gets loose and starts to leak is not a complicated procedure. It has 9 very easy steps and if you start with all the tools that are required for the job, you can do this yourself.
Now, you need to know a few details about the kitchen faucet type and the individual parts that need to be removed and put back while you fix the faucet. So, make sure you read the whole guide thoroughly before getting started. Here we go.
Here’s what you will need to get the job done.
- Allen wrench or hex wrench (3/32”)
- Mini knife
- Adjustable wrench
- Basin wrench
- Hand gloves
Step 1: Empty Your Sink Cabinet
Before you start tightening the handle of the kitchen faucet, you must remove any and all items that are in the sink’s cabinet so that they don’t get damaged in case there is an accidental spill of water.
Step 2: Close the Basin’s Drain Hole
The next step is to make sure that the smaller parts of the faucet, like nuts and bolts, are lost while you do the rest. So, plug the basin drain up.
This is also important because you will need all those parts when you close up the operation. If you miss any, you will need to stop work and drive to the hardware store.
Step 3: Turn Off Your Valves for Water Supply
In case something goes wrong while you are working on the valves, you want to make sure that water doesn’t spill all over you and the kitchen. So, you must locate the supply valves and turn them off. This will also help when you fix up the faucet because if it is not done right, water will gush out.
Typically, there are two valves on the faucet. One for hot water and one for cold water. In a faucet like Moen’s, they will be in the back, which means you might need a flashlight to reach and turn them off properly.
You will need to rotate the valves anti-clockwise a few times to shut them down entirely. If you don’t do this all the way, water might not gush out, but it certainly will drip which isn’t any less of a problem in the later stage. In fact, it might also disturb you while you are tightening the faucet handle.
Once these valves are closed, you can turn the faucet handle on and check if you got it right. Do this slowly to avoid any unpleasant surprises. This is often a step that is skipped. You can do that, but at your own risk.
Step 4: Identify Your Faucet Type
Now you need to figure out what kind of faucet you have. For some models, this means you have to remove a decorative cap that is on the handle. Using a knife or a flathead screwdriver, you must open the cap and you will then see the head screw.
Step 5: Pry off Your Water Lines
If you are dealing with Moen’s kitchen faucet, you will see a base area from which the water lines need to be pried off. You will need to get an adjustable wrench for this step.
But before you get started on that, get yourself a pair of gloves to keep your hands safe. Now, place the wrench between your water supply line and the inlet. Move the wrench in the anticlockwise motion to pry the lines off.
Step 6: Tighten the Handle’s Screw
Once again, tightening the actual screw of the handle depends on the screw type. So, you need to determine that before proceeding. If you see that the screw is located at the kitchen faucet handle’s base, you will need a hex head or Allen wrench. Turn it clockwise to tighten the screw.
And if you see that the screw is under the decorative cap, then you might need a head screwdriver or a hex wrench to do the same. For this, you will need to hold the handle of the kitchen faucet and then move the screw in the clockwise direction.
Now, if you are using the hex wrench, you might have to turn the handle on. This is the reason why we said you must close the water supply valves.
Step 7: Tighten the Nuts at the Base
We’re almost at the end. Now you need to locate the loose nuts that are used to connect your kitchen faucet and its base. For that, you will need a basin wrench which is pretty easy to get.
You must place these loose nuts at the basin’s base. Then, you must hold them with the basin wrench and by putting some pressure on them, you must tighten each of them individually. Make sure the nuts are tight enough to make sure you don’t have to go through this entire process yet again.
Step 8: Stabilize the Faucet Handle
Once you are finished with the tightening of the nuts, you must make sure that the faucet handle is tight and good to go. You can make sure of this by moving the handle with your hand. If it’s wobbly, you need to re-check the nuts again. If not, you are almost done.
Connect your water supply valves again and turn the faucet handle to see if there is any leak at the base. If not, you’ve done a good job.
Step 9: Put the Cap Back on and Switch on the Water Supply
And finally, now that the faucet handle is secure, you must place the decorative cap back where it belongs and do the same with any other items you took out before you started the process of tightening the handle.
The Bottom Line
Now you know what to do if you have a loose single handle kitchen faucet. And ideally, this process should solve the problem. But if it does not solve the problem, clearly there is more to it than your initial diagnosis, which means you should stop fooling around with the equipment and call a professional plumber.
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