Bathroom & Kitchen Guide

Your complete guide to remodeling, design and new products.


How to change a washer in the bathtub?

When a traditional washer-based faucet drips instead of shutting off completely, it is a sign that the washer has worn and needs to be replaced.

Before you start make sure you turn off the water main. If you don’t, you will end up having water spray everywhere.

To change the washer you need to remove the stem /faucet. Cover a plumber’s wrench with a soft cloth so you don’t scratch it and turn the faucet. In some cases you will need to get into the wall to do this. This is usual will older bathtubs. Once you have removed the faucet, you will need to undo a large nut, perhaps with a screwdriver and under this should be a washer ring, it is a rubber based product in the shaped of a ring. Sometimes the faucet body –the brass ring that the washer grinds against, maybe very worn, if this is the case it will make the washer replacement ineffective within a few days.

Pry out the worn washer, if the screws are tough to remove use a little WD40 help loosen. Pop on the correct sized new washer.
The washer should fit snugly without having to be forced into position.

Now reverse all the steps you took to remove the faucet. Once you have done this turn on the water main to check if it is working. If you have a badly damaged faucet it may need to be replaced completely or fixed by a plumber.

A leaking faucet can waste thousands of gallons of water per year so it is an environmental responsibility to replace worn washers not just a financial one.

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