If your bathtub has a single-handle faucet that is leaking, you need to repair it, and in most cases, a worn washer or O-ring around the valve stem is the cause. You can try to repair this problem on your own, and if you decide to do this, it is a must that you locate the water cut off first because you’ll have to turn off the water to the faucet. This has to be your first step, and only once this is complete can you proceed to the next step.
If you’re dealing with a leaky single-handle bathtub faucet, the following tips will help you replace the worn washer/O-ring:
- Turn off the water to the faucet and then open it to relieve the water pressure.
- Loosen the screw that is holding the faucet handle and remove it.
- There is an escutcheon plate around the faucet, which has to come off, and you can do this by removing the screws that are holding it in place.
- Find the bonnet nut that is holding the faucet stem in the housing and loosen it.
- Using a pair of pliers, grasp the protruding tip of the valve stem and pull it straight out of the faucet housing.
- At this point, the O-ring on the outside of the valve stem can be removed.
- Slide your new O-ring on the valve stem but apply a very small amount of silicone grease to it before you do this.
- Open and close the water main a few times as this will clear any dirt or debris that may be in the line, and then reassemble the faucet.
- The reassembly process will require you to slide the valve stem back in the faucet house, after which you have to tighten the bonnet nut.
- The last step will require you to reattach the escutcheon plate and handle, and your problem should be solved.
Your bathtub faucet handle is made of several different parts, and some of these move while others do not. In most cases, the washer is the problem whenever you have a leaky single-handle faucet, so if yours has gone bad, you will experience leaks, and the tips above can help you repair this problem. If you follow these steps and continue to experience a leak, it’s best to call in a professional for help because they will have the skills and experience to deal with this problem. They will resolve the issue safely and correctly, so you won’t have to worry about any further damage. Sometimes, the problem can be far more complex, so don’t attempt a repair if you’re uncomfortable with the process.