How to Fix a Leaky Bathtub Faucet?
If your bathtub faucet is leaking, you’re not alone. There are a variety of causes for leaks, including an old washer, a faulty stem or cartridge, and corrosion. Whether you need to repair your tub faucet or replace it altogether, there are steps to take to prevent further damage.
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First, turn off the water supply. This will shut off the entire flow of water to the house. Then, use an adjustable wrench to turn off the shut off valve. Usually located in the basement, these valves are often used to shut off the main water supply. Alternatively, if the valve is outside of your home, you may have to turn off the water meter.
Once you’ve turned off the water, you can begin repairing your leaky bathtub faucet. You’ll want to find the source of your leak. In many cases, the culprit will be a washer. Replace the faulty one with a new one.
In addition to replacing the washer, you may need to replace the stem. It can be difficult to remove a stem, however, so you may have to seek professional help. To do this, you’ll need a screwdriver or a socket wrench.
For the best results, you’ll want to make sure you follow all instructions carefully. For instance, you’ll need to disconnect the handles from their stems. This is particularly important if the spout is leaking. Also, you’ll want to use towels to keep small items from falling down the drain. While it isn’t necessary to take apart the whole faucet, you’ll want to inspect the seal to ensure there’s nothing leaking.
Next, you’ll need to identify the parts you’re missing. Some parts are simple, like a seal, but others are more complicated. A seal is a rubber band that fits in the valve, while a washer is the part that pushes against the valve each time you turn the faucet on or off.
Luckily, you’ll be able to get most of these parts from your local hardware store. However, you’ll likely need a few special tools for this job. One of the most useful is a pipe wrench, which is a wrench that is elongated at the end and is useful for a number of DIY plumbing tasks.
When removing the handle, you’ll want to use a flat blade screwdriver or a Phillips screwdriver. You can also use a jar gripper or a hand pliers to dislodge the handle from the stem. Be careful when removing the handle, though, as you don’t want to crack or break it.
Finally, you’ll need to unscrew the escutcheon. An escutcheon is a plate that covers a hole in the wall, similar to a keyhole. Sometimes, it can get stuck on the wall, or it might need to be twisted off.
Once you’ve removed the escutcheon, you can then use a utility knife to score the seal to make it easier to remove. Afterwards, you’ll need to replace the escutcheon and reinstall the faucet.