The kitchen faucet’s been leaking for so long, it’s embarrassing to admit exactly how long.
I bought a new Moen faucet months ago, but I’ve been dreading the idea of trying to work in a cramped space with “not quite” the right wrench for the job.
A few days ago I dusted off my resolve to finally “get it over with”. I pulled out the still-in-the-box faucet to look it over and discovered a neat feature I’d never seen before.
It made installation a breeze.
Tight space and twisted back
The basic problem I had anticipated was access. The built-in 60’s-era sink cabinet has a drawer on the bottom, so the classic “lying down/reaching up” position was out of the question.
So imagine… kneeling with your head and shoulders in the cabinet, twisted at 90 degrees, and turning a wrench an eighth of a turn on a nut that you can’t actually see and reach at the same time.
Add to that a heating pipe with razor-sharp aluminum fins about 8″ below the sink, and a 2 x 2 cleat immediately next to the faucet hole and you start to see my conundrum.
Out with the old
The old faucet was a conventional setup with two threaded rods and supply lines that went through the outer holes. The small nuts were easy to loosen with a small adjustable wrench and spin off by hand.
Moen gets it right
Maybe all the faucet-making folks are doing this these days, but the design feature of the Moen “Torrance” single lever kitchen faucet that made my day was the brass nut with three jack screws for tightening the faucet in place.
Installing the new faucet was a snap:
- Place the faucet base on the sink.
- Drop the supply lines through the centre hole and set the faucet in place
- Thread the jackscrews into the large brass nut
- Slip the O-ring, washer and nut over the supply lines and screw the nut onto the faucet threads
- Make sure the faucet is properly positioned and tighten the nut with your fingers as much as you can
Here’s the good part
Just tighten the jack screws with a Phillips screwdriver, alternating between screws, until they’re tight. The screws snug the washer up against the bottom of the counter top and secures the faucet.
There was plenty of room to use a screwdriver in a comfortable position, where trying to turn a wrench up behind the sink would have been “sub-optimal” to say the least.
After that, it was simply a matter of hooking on the supply lines and turning on the faucet.