How To Guide

How to Repair a Leaky Kitchen Faucet

Water should not come out from your kitchen sink faucet. Stop those annoying leaks today!

by Ian Haynes

A leaky faucet is not a situation somebody wants to deal with. In fact, many households tend to just leave their faucets dripping or leaking, especially if the problem is in the bathtub or the bathroom sink. However, truth be told, when the kitchen faucet needs to be repaired because of a leak, it is not as easy to ignore.

The kitchen is the hub of a household. The meals are made there and it is important that everything runs smoothly. So instead of calling a plumber for an expensive fix, when the faucet in your kitchen leaks, look no further than here.

But what should be done first?

How to Repair a Leaky Kitchen Faucet

Access the Situation

First, before you break out any tools, figure out why the faucet needs repair. More often than not, the faucet is leaking because something is out of place or needs to be repaired inside. Try to locate where the leak is coming from. Turn your tap on and off, keep an eye out. Make sure the supply pipes are also not leaking. You need to make sure the problem is something you can actually address before you address it, otherwise you might find a more expensive problem on your hands.

Turn Off the Water Valves

Once you have figured out what is causing the leak and where it is coming from, turn off the water valves that supply water to your kitchen sink. This is especially important because you do not want water spraying into your face when you try to take the faucet apart.

Put A Stopper in Your Drain

To prevent the loss of screws or washers, put a stopper in your sink drain. Having to take apart the piping because a screw fell down into the sink will quickly turn this job into an all-day effort. It is better to be prepared in this situation and organized as you are dealing with plumbing.

Figure Out the Type of Faucet In Your Kitchen

There are four times of faucets. Compression, ceramic-disk, cartridge and ball faucets. Each type is taken apart differently. You will need to understand the type you have to identify where the problem is coming from.

To fix a compression you will need to replace the seat washer in most cases. With a cartridge faucet, you will need to buy new o-rings and replace them. For a ceramic faucet, you will need to replace the seals and possibly even soak the cylinders. For a ball faucet, you will also have to buy new o-rings. With all of these types, you may need to buy completely new cartridges all together.

Whatever the type, it is important to thoroughly research the type of faucet you have and understand how it comes apart. This way you can quickly take your faucet apart, fix it and then assemble it.

Fix Your Faucet

Go through the necessary steps to fix your faucet. The most common type is the ball faucet, so you will need to remove the bonnet and then the ball. As you take your faucet apart, look for damaged parts. Find what is wrong. Is something cracked? Has an O-ring broken? Where is the damage? Determine if you need to replace your faucet altogether.

Reassembly and Turning on Your Water

Once your faucet is fixed and you have repaired or replaced the necessary parts, put it all back together again. Make sure you remember to use all screws and washers. Reassemble it as you took it apart.

Afterwards, turn your water back on and check to make sure everything is in working order. If it is, you are finished and your kitchen faucet has been repaired.

Other Factors to Consider

  • check
    Should your faucet still leak after you are done, the problem might not be in the faucet. Thoroughly inspect everything again.
  • check
    Consider turning off power to your kitchen for optimal safety.
  • check
    Take it slow and make sure you keep all of the parts in a place you are not likely to lose them.

This video helps explain in more detail the exact steps needed for fixing a leaking tap.


Repairing your kitchen faucet can be fast and easy. It is important to thoroughly research what type of faucet you have and how to take it apart. However, once you know, the repair should only take a couple of hours and you have saved a lot of money instead of calling a plumber.

Ian Haynes is an expert writer who has successfully deployed over 500 plumbing pages and other related content. He has an excellent understanding of home plumbing issues and translates his experiences via Plumbing Lab so readers can have a better understanding of common household problems. Outside of his work, Ian likes exploring Brooklyn with his Labrador.