Sometimes you may want to refresh the look of your kitchen without spending a fortune or enduring the upheaval of a complete renovation. You might think that opting to change a kitchen tap will make little difference, but you will be surprised how a new tap can improve the look of your room.
Changing a tap is a relatively inexpensive way to update your kitchen, and with so many upgrades available, you can make a stunning transformation. Even better, it is a job you can tackle yourself, providing you follow some straightforward steps.
In this guide, we will explain every step of how to change a kitchen tap and help you avoid any disasters.
Guide to Changing a Kitchen Tap
Ideal Home suggests that the two essentials for changing a tap are having access to the underside of the sink and knowing how to turn off the water supply.
Tools and Materials Required to Change a Tap
– Bowl and Towel
– Flat Head Screwdriver
– Adjustable Spanner
– Plumber’s Tape
– It will also help to have a rag, masking tape, and limescale remover.
Step-by-Step Guide to Changing a Tap
Choose the Right Tap
Choosing a tap is not just about looks. You will see mixer taps, tall taps, small taps, taps with detachable hoses, swivel taps and many more designs. You can choose levers or traditional knobs, and colours include chrome, brushed steel, black, bronze and copper.
What is most important is checking whether a tap will flow correctly with your water pressure. If your pressure is low, you should avoid a tap with a spray hose.
At B&Q, you can select taps by water pressure.
To measure your water pressure, hold a jug under your existing tap for 6 seconds. Multiply the captured water measurement by ten to get the flow per minute.
Under 10 litres is considered low pressure, while above 15 litres is high.
1. Turn the water Off
You must turn off the water supply by turning off the stopcock or closing the isolating valves. Knowing how to do this in case of a leak or emergency is always a good idea.Put the towel in the cupboard with a bowl to catch drips. Run the tap to drain away any remaining water.
2. Use some masking tape to label the hot and cold pipes.
3. Disconnect the Tap
You use the adjustable spanner to disconnect the tap from the hot and cold pipes. First, loosen the nuts on the supply pipes and disconnect them using the spanner.
4. Take Off the Old Tap
Now you will need to bend to see right under the tap. You will see a brass nut holding your old fixture in place.
Unscrew the nut using the spanner or a flathead screwdriver to remove the tap.
If you live in a hard water area, you will probably find some limescale around the hole. It is best to clean this using some limescale cleaner or a mixture of vinegar and water. Ensure you do not damage any surfaces in the process by following instructions for your worktop and sink.
5. Fix the New Tap
You may need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to assemble the tap before you begin.
Your new tap will have a threaded tube underneath. Place the tap over the hole and push it down the hole.
Now you can place the plate and washer over the threaded tube and finish by tightening a nut with the spanner or pliers.
The next part is easier if you have flexible supply pipes. If you have traditional copper pipes, you may need to use some flexible hoses to bridge any gaps depending on the length of the new taps.
6. Connect the supply pipes to the new tap using the spanner.
7. Complete and Test
– Tighten all the joints before turning the water back on.
– Turn on the taps slowly and observe if there are any leaks. Expect some noises as the water first flushes through.
What if the new tap is leaking?
It isn’t unusual to experience a leak with a newly fitted tap, but there is no need to panic.
You must undo the nut when you spot a leak and use some plumber’s tape inside before retightening.
This should be enough to plug the leak and prevent damage.
Can anyone change a kitchen tap?
The essential requirements for changing a tap are accessing the pipes easily and knowing how to isolate the water supply.
If access isn’t an issue and you have the right equipment, there is no reason anyone should not be able to give the job a go. If you don’t already own one, it is worth investing in an adjustable spanner.
People are often put off because they are not used to plumbing, but providing you can get access to the nuts, you should be able to loosen them and tighten them onto the new tap with relative ease.
A common stumbling block is when the new tap is a different size from the original, and the supply pipes do not reach. As long as you understand that you may have to bridge a gap between the supply pipes with some flexible hose, you should be able to deal with any potential issues.
Separate taps are the easiest to change as mixer taps, which most kitchens have, may also have an additional plate. It will be held in place with nuts that can simply be loosened and removed and then reapplied to the new tap.
If access is more difficult because pipes are behind a wall, it may be best to seek professional help.
If you are looking to renovate or upgrade your kitchen and want to have a new worktop, get in touch with us at Mo’s Stone. We supply and fit premium worktops in quartz, granite and marble.