How do I remove my kitchen faucet?
August 12, 2017 6:35 PM   Subscribe

I can't figure out how to unscrew the faucet from my kitchen countertop. Help?

I have a kitchen faucet seen here. I shut off the water, unscrewed the connector hoses and then I'm stumped. It looks like this from underneath the counter. I have a basin wrench but it doesn't fit up into the hole - there isn't enough room between the sides of the hole and the nut. The lower part of the nut - where the hoses are coming out, doesn't seem to move at all. I tried an adjustable wrench on it, too.

Help me achieve house repair goddess status!
posted by otherwordlyglow to Home & Garden (20 answers total)
You're on the right track with the adjustable wrench on the lower part of the nut. Try putting a little more muscle into it.
posted by doctord at 6:48 PM on August 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

That’s gonna be a real pain in the ass but you’ve got it correct. My best suggestion would be to see if you can get some locking pliers that fit up there.
posted by sixfootaxolotl at 7:15 PM on August 12, 2017 [2 favorites]

Think rightie tightie, lefty loosie, unless you have some hardware from Japan, which happens, and then it turns the other way. I first noticed some backwards threading of things when I bought a Japanese watercolor set, and the brush holds water in it, but it all screws together the other way. Then the faucets at my old condo were back threaded so putting on the hose was frustrating until I tried it backwards. The bottom hex is where you can work it, it looks like the whole top and bottom hex assembly is one piece. It might be backwards threaded.
posted by Oyéah at 7:18 PM on August 12, 2017

Locking pliers or a bigger channel lock, those might fit where the long thing you have wouldn't.
posted by Oyéah at 7:19 PM on August 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

You may need long nosed locking pliers, similar to this. If you make trip the hardware store, measure the nut diameter to make sure you get a pair that opens wide enough.
posted by The Deej at 8:09 PM on August 12, 2017

You did take off the top of the faucet, right? Before you got underneath? You unscrewed it all?
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 8:10 PM on August 12, 2017

Okay. I have a couple locking pliers that I can try. I suppose I should wait until morning though in case I really mess things up but I really want to try now!

And no, I don't think I can take off the top before I go underneath, can I?
posted by otherwordlyglow at 8:16 PM on August 12, 2017

Yes, you have to take off the top, first. It comes off in pieces. You unscrew the nut that takes off the handle, then you unscrew the top and take it off, etc.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 8:29 PM on August 12, 2017

Huh. That's not at all the impression I get looking at a million Youtube videos.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 8:33 PM on August 12, 2017

Are you trying to replace the whole faucet or what?
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 8:37 PM on August 12, 2017

Yes, but everything I've read and looked at shows that you first unscrew the nut below the counter and then pull up the entire thing - faucet and connecting hoses from the top.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 8:45 PM on August 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

Maybe you can try something like this tool.
posted by pants tent at 9:00 PM on August 12, 2017 [4 favorites]

Yes, the basin tool that pants tent linked to is just about the best thing ever.
posted by jferg at 9:07 PM on August 12, 2017 [2 favorites]

Can you get a grip on the top part of the faucet? Sometimes that helps loosen things below, and you can partially unscrew it from above. I had to also drip some Ospho from above to get things loose. Sinks are horrible.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 9:31 PM on August 12, 2017

If it's stuck tight/hard to start, try frequent but small back and forth motions with the tool to try to get it unstuck.
posted by jeffamaphone at 10:03 PM on August 12, 2017

I like tent pant's tool as well, but it may not be big enough. You might be able to fit a stem wrench up there.

And remember to bring your Dictionary of Profanity (with Synonyms), as required on all plumbing jobs.
posted by Marky at 10:09 PM on August 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

The last new faucet I installed came with a plastic wrench for the nut on the underside of the sink. My basin wrench would also not fit.
posted by wierdo at 10:41 PM on August 12, 2017

There is no reason to disassemble the faucet above the sink.

I'm pretty sure you could get a grip on that with a pair of Channellock pliers, as Oyéah suggested. If you have to buy a tool, Channellocks are more likely to be useful for a variety of situations, whereas the specialized faucet wrenches are one-hit wonders.

If you happened to have a chisel and hammer around, you could hack away a bit of the particleboard around the nut. A rough chamfer cut around the bottom of that hole wouldn't hurt anything.
posted by jon1270 at 3:41 AM on August 13, 2017

I DID IT!!!!!!!!!

It was the channellock pliers that eventually worked. I also tried smearing it with some penetrating oil but I have no idea if that helped. Faucet is removed, new faucet is installed, and I AM A BADASS.

I really want to thank all of you for your advice and encouragement. I really needed that little extra "you're on the right track" boost. My husband died nearly two years ago and this would have been something he tackled with ease and enthusiasm. These days I'm the guardian of a garage full of bewildering tools, a house from the 1930s, and a constant feeling of not being able to fully manage either of these things. Every time I pick up one of his tools and put it to good use, I feel like he is with me, watching over me and our daughter, doing what he can to make sure we're okay. Figuring out stuff like this gives me so much strength and resolve - it's really important and affirming.

I'm gonna go make a necklace so I can wear that stupid basin nut around my neck. I'm the boss!
posted by otherwordlyglow at 3:30 PM on August 13, 2017 [10 favorites]

Thanks for the good report! And condolences on your loss.

If it's any consolation, I'm an avid DIY-er having done all kinds of home improvement/repair projects over the last 5 houses and 30 years. On nearly EVERY project, including my current bathroom remodel, I run into something like this that seems frustratingly simple yet impossible at the same time. So it's not just your newness to this that is the issue; it's the nature of the home improvement beast!
posted by The Deej at 9:15 AM on August 14, 2017 [1 favorite]

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