Fix-It Chick: Replace a bathroom faucet that’s broken beyond repair

If your lavatory faucet is beyond repair, or you just want an updated look, replacing an old bathroom faucet is easier than you think. If the old faucet handles are 4 inches apart, the faucet can be replaced with any standard single or double handle lavatory faucet. If the handles are farther apart, a more expensive widespread lavatory faucet will be needed.

Step 1: With the hot and cold water running freely through the current faucet, shut off the water supply to the faucet. Allow the remaining water to drain from the lines.

Step 2: Place a couple of towels beneath the sink and unscrew the supply lines connected to the underside of the faucet. A flexible head faucet wrench or supply line removal tool may be necessary to accomplish this goal.

Step 3: Unscrew the retaining nuts located on the faucet nipples directly above where the lines were connected. If there is a pop-up drain assembly, disconnect the lift rod from the strap assembly by unscrewing the thumb screw located behind the bowl of the sink.

Step 4: Pry the faucet up from the rim of the sink and remove any sealant material found below.

Step 5: Clean and dry the area thoroughly before inserting the new faucet. If the faucet came with a pre-formed gasket, place the gasket on the bottom of the faucet plate. If it did not come with a gasket, spread a layer of silicone sealant or plumbers putty on the bottom of the faucet plate.

Step 6: Insert the new faucet into the sink holes and position the faucet correctly. Tighten the faucet into place by screwing the retaining nuts up onto the faucet nipples from below the sink.

Step 7: Once the faucet is secure, wrap two to three layers of Teflon plumber’s tape onto the bottom threads of the sink nipples. Connect the supply lines to the nipples and hand tighten the lines.

Step 8: Turn the water supply back on and check for leaks. Continue to tighten the supply lines until any leaks are eliminated.

Step 9: Remove the aerator from the new sink faucet and turn the hot and the cold water on to remove any debris from the lines. Shut off the water and replace the faucet aerator. If there is a pop-up drain assembly, read the manufacturer instructions and attach the pop-up assembly accordingly.

— Have a home improvement question for Fix-It Chick? Email it to Linda Cottin at