How To Replace A Bathtub Faucet And Handles

How To Replace A Bathtub Faucet And Handles

If you’re tired of that leaky faucet and outdated handles in your bathtub, it’s time to take matters into your own hands and replace them. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be a professional plumber to accomplish this task. With a few basic tools and some patience, you can have a brand new faucet and handles that will not only improve the functionality of your bathtub but also enhance its aesthetic appeal. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through the process of replacing a bathtub faucet and handles, so grab your tools and let’s get started!


Gathering the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before diving headfirst into the project, it’s essential to gather all the tools and materials you’ll need. Here’s a handy checklist to ensure you’re well-prepared:

  1. Adjustable wrench
  2. Screwdriver (Phillips or flathead, depending on the screws)
  3. Plumber’s tape
  4. New bathtub faucet and handles
  5. Bucket or towels to catch any water drips
  6. Safety goggles (optional but recommended)

Removing the Old Faucet and Handles

The first step in replacing a bathtub faucet and handles is to remove the old ones. Start by turning off the water supply to the bathtub. Look for the shut-off valves under the sink or near the bathtub and turn them clockwise to close them. This will prevent any water from flowing while you work.

Next, remove the decorative caps covering the screws holding the faucet handles in place. Use a flathead screwdriver or your fingers to pry them off gently. Once the caps are removed, you’ll see the screws. Unscrew them using the appropriate screwdriver, either Phillips or flathead.

Now, it’s time to remove the faucet itself. Locate the retaining nut holding the faucet in place and use an adjustable wrench to loosen it. Once the nut is loose, you should be able to pull the faucet off the bathtub. Be prepared for some water to drip out during this step, so have a bucket or towels handy to catch any spills.

Repeat the same process for the handles. Remove the screws holding them in place and use an adjustable wrench to loosen the retaining nuts. Once the nuts are loose, you can easily remove the handles from the bathtub.

Installing the New Faucet and Handles

With the old faucet and handles out of the way, it’s time to install the new ones. Start by applying plumber’s tape to the threaded ends of the pipes where the faucet will connect. This will create a watertight seal and prevent any leaks.

Begin by installing the new faucet. Slide it onto the threaded ends of the pipes and hand-tighten the retaining nut. Once it’s snug, use an adjustable wrench to give it an extra quarter-turn to ensure a secure fit. Be careful not to overtighten, as this can cause damage to the pipes or faucet.

Next, install the new handles. Slide them onto the appropriate stems and secure them with the retaining nuts. Again, hand-tighten and then give them a quarter-turn with the adjustable wrench to ensure they’re firmly in place.

Testing and Finishing Up

Now that the new faucet and handles are installed, it’s time to test them out. Turn on the water supply and check for any leaks. If you notice any drips, tighten the connections a bit more until they stop. Remember, it’s important not to overtighten, as this can cause damage.

Once you’re confident that everything is leak-free, replace the decorative caps over the screws on the handles. Press them firmly into place, ensuring they’re secure.


Q: Can I replace just the handles without changing the entire faucet?

A: Yes, it’s possible to replace just the handles without replacing the entire faucet. However, it’s essential to ensure that the new handles are compatible with your existing faucet. Check the manufacturer’s specifications or consult with a professional if you’re unsure.

Q: How long does it typically take to replace a bathtub faucet and handles?

A: The time it takes to replace a bathtub faucet and handles can vary depending on your level of experience and the complexity of the installation. On average, it can take anywhere from 1-3 hours.


Replacing a bathtub faucet and handles might seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and a little know-how, it’s a project that you can tackle yourself. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a leak-free and aesthetically pleasing bathtub. Remember to gather all the necessary tools and materials, remove the old faucet and handles carefully, and install the new ones securely. Don’t forget to test for leaks and tighten any connections if needed. With a little patience and determination, you’ll have a bathtub that’s as good as new in no time. So, what are you waiting for? Get started on replacing your bathtub faucet and handles today!

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