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How to Repair a Dripping Kitchen Faucet

Is your kitchen faucet constantly dripping? Not only is the sound annoying, but it can also waste a significant amount of water over time. Fortunately, repairing a dripping kitchen faucet is a relatively simple task that you can do yourself with just a few basic tools. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of repairing a dripping kitchen faucet. From identifying the cause of the leak to replacing faulty parts, we will cover everything you need to know to fix your faucet and stop the drip.

1. Identify the Cause of the Leak

The first step in repairing a dripping kitchen faucet is to identify the cause of the leak. There are several possible reasons why your faucet may be dripping, and understanding the cause will help you determine the appropriate solution. Here are some common causes of faucet leaks:

  • Worn-out O-rings
  • Loose or damaged valve seats
  • Corroded or faulty washers
  • Broken cartridge or valve stem

To identify the cause of the leak, start by examining the faucet closely. Look for any visible signs of damage or wear, such as dripping water from the spout or leaking around the base of the handle. Once you have identified the cause, you can proceed with the necessary repairs.

2. Gather the Required Tools and Materials

Before you begin repairing your dripping kitchen faucet, it’s important to gather all the necessary tools and materials. Having everything you need on hand will make the process much smoother and more efficient. Here are the tools and materials you will typically need:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Phillips and flathead screwdrivers
  • Replacement parts (O-rings, washers, valve seats, etc.)
  • Plumber’s tape
  • Bucket or towel to catch water
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Make sure to check the specific requirements for your faucet model, as some may require additional tools or parts. Once you have gathered all the necessary tools and materials, you can proceed with the repair process.

3. Turn Off the Water Supply

Before you start disassembling your kitchen faucet, it’s crucial to turn off the water supply to prevent any accidents or further water damage. Most faucets have a shut-off valve located under the sink. Turn the valve clockwise to shut off the water supply.

Once the water supply is turned off, open the faucet to relieve any remaining pressure and drain the water from the pipes. Place a bucket or towel under the sink to catch any water that may still be in the pipes.

4. Disassemble the Faucet

With the water supply turned off and the pressure relieved, you can now begin disassembling the faucet to access the faulty parts. The exact disassembly process may vary depending on the type and model of your faucet, but here are the general steps:

  1. Remove the handle: Use a screwdriver to remove the screw that holds the handle in place. Once the screw is removed, gently lift the handle off the faucet.
  2. Remove the cartridge or valve stem: Depending on your faucet type, you may need to remove either the cartridge or the valve stem. Use an adjustable wrench to loosen and remove the cartridge or valve stem.
  3. Inspect and replace faulty parts: Once the cartridge or valve stem is removed, inspect it for any signs of damage or wear. Replace any faulty parts, such as O-rings, washers, or valve seats, with new ones.
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Keep track of the order in which you remove the parts, as you will need to reassemble them in the same order later. Taking photos or making notes can be helpful to ensure you remember the correct placement of each component.

5. Reassemble and Test the Faucet

After replacing any faulty parts, it’s time to reassemble the faucet and test it for leaks. Follow these steps to reassemble the faucet:

  1. Insert the new cartridge or valve stem: Place the new cartridge or valve stem back into the faucet body. Use an adjustable wrench to tighten it securely.
  2. Replace the handle: Align the handle with the faucet body and secure it in place with the screw.
  3. Turn on the water supply: Once the faucet is reassembled, turn on the water supply by turning the shut-off valve counterclockwise.
  4. Test for leaks: Slowly turn on the faucet and check for any leaks. If you notice any leaks, tighten the connections or replace any faulty parts as needed.

If the faucet is no longer dripping and there are no leaks, congratulations! You have successfully repaired your kitchen faucet. If the problem persists, you may need to seek professional help or consider replacing the faucet altogether.


Repairing a dripping kitchen faucet is a task that can be easily accomplished with the right tools and knowledge. By identifying the cause of the leak, gathering the necessary tools and materials, turning off the water supply, disassembling the faucet, and reassembling it with new parts, you can fix the drip and restore your faucet to its proper functioning. Remember to take your time, follow the steps carefully, and test for leaks before considering the repair complete. With a little effort and patience, you can save both water and money by repairing your dripping kitchen faucet.

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