Moen bathroom faucets are top-rated faucets that come in different shapes, styles, and finishing. These faucets are most famous for their durability and reliability.
Occasionally, different parts of the faucet may develop a fault, and the handle is one of such parts. The faults that plague the handle of a bathroom faucet mainly include mineral build-ups and leaks.
The most straightforward approach to handling a faulty handle is removing and replacing it. Although removing Moen bathroom faucet handles is an easy process, it requires care and precision. Pull too hard and you may ruin other functioning parts.
So, you must know what you’re doing. This post discusses how to successfully remove and replace your Moen bathroom faucet handle without damaging other parts.
How to Remove Moen Bathroom Faucet Handle
Moen bathroom faucets have different styles and designs. Some handles have screws while others don’t. Some are double-handled, while others are single-handled. Here is how to remove a regular double-handle faucet:
Step#1: Turn off the water supply
Turn off your water supply before you start the process of removing your Moen bathroom faucet handle.
Step#2: Find where the handle connects to the escutcheon
This step involves finding where your faucet handle connects to the escutcheon, which is the base of the deck plate. It is essential to find the connecting point to know if the handle has screws or not.
The presence or absence of screws would determine how you proceed with removing the faucet handle.
First, check the back of the handle for a screw or bolt. If there isn’t any, you may be able to remove the handle manually. Next, hold the base of the handle and turn it left to remove it manually. This left turn should loosen the handle.
If your faucet handle comes with a screw, you would need to loosen it with a screwdriver. However, the screw may be close to a wall or challenging to reach with a screwdriver. In this case, you would need a socket alongside the screwdriver.
Step#3: Use a wrench
Many times people remove and replace their faucet handles because it isn’t turning, as it should. In this situation, removing the handle from the base of the deck plate may be challenging whether you have to unscrew bolts or not.
For stiff handles without bolts or screws, place the wrench on either side of the handle’s base and turn it, slowly, to the left. Don’t turn with too much force. Allow the wrench to do its work.
For handles with bolts or screws, you would need a socket wrench to remove your faucet handle.
What To Do After Removing Your Moen Bathroom Faucet Handle
After removing your faucet handle, you should do the following:
Clean and remove mineral build-up:
There is usually a build-up of different unpleasant substances inside the faucet handles. This build-up often prevents the handle from functioning correctly. So, it is essential to clean them out before replacing the removed faucet handle.
To clean the build-up, you would need white vinegar. Mix equal parts of water and vinegar. Pour the mixture on the part of the handle (open) linked to the deck plate. Then wipe down with a rag or towel. Ensure you wipe clean all dirty parts of the attached handle.
Remove and check the cartridge:
If your faucet handle is always sticky, you may need to change your cartridge.
The cartridge is usually in the inner casing of the faucet handle. It is cylindrical and should be taken off after you remove the handle.
Water is constantly touching the cartridge. This contact with water causes minerals and other substances to build up. In turn, this mineral build-up leads to a sticky faucet handle.
The cylindrical cartridge has a lip with which you can pull it out. Use a plier to pull. If the substance build-up on the cartridge is too much, it might be challenging to remove. In this case, pour vinegar over it and leave for a few hours. Then pull the lip again with a plier.
Replace or clean the O-rings:
After your cartridge is dealt with, check the black rubber rings in the faucet handle. The black rings are O-rings. Remove and change the o-ring if it looks worn out.
Also, clean that faucet area with a mixture of white vinegar and water. Replace what needs replacement. Many of these tiny parts of the Moen bathroom faucet handle are affordable and easy to get.
How To Replace Your Moen Bathroom Faucet Handle
If you can successfully remove your faucet handle without damaging it, then you can replace it without hassles. All you need to do is reverse the removal process.
To replace the handle, ensure all the parts you removed are appropriately replaced. Examples include the o-ring and cartridge. You can take a picture of the arrangement of these parts before removing them. This way, you can easily replicate their placement when you’re done cleaning.
To put back your screwless handle, turn right instead of left.
How To Repair A Dripping Moen Bathroom Faucet
Dripping bathroom faucets are the worst. It is best to deal with it immediately because of the disturbing dripping sounds and wastage of water. You can fix these leaks yourself or get professional help. Here is how to get it fixed by you:
Find the handle with a faulty seal:
It is easier to find a leak in a single-handle bathroom faucet because there is only one handle. However, for double-handle Moen faucets, you need to confirm which handle is the source of the leak. Usually, the handle with a faulty seal is the source. So, it would help if you found the handle with a bad seal.
Test the seal of each handle to know which is bad. To do this, start with one of the handles, either left or right. For example, to test the right handle, Turn off the water supply to the left handle by turning its shut-off valve. The valves are usually beneath your sink. They control the supply of water from the primary source through each handle.
The right shut-off valve is for the right handle and the left for the right handle. After turning off the right valve, turn on the right handle so that leftover water can leave the handle. Then turn on the left handle and check for any leaks. Leaks indicate that the seal of the left handle is faulty.
If there are no leaks, you must repeat the process for the other handle. There are also times when the leak may be from both handles. Whatever the case, this process would reveal it.
Turn off shut-off valves:
You need to turn off both the right and left shut-off valves to fix the faulty handle. Please don’t turn it back on till you have completed the repair.
Disassemble the handle:
Except you’re a pro at disassembling faucet handles, you must take note of all the parts you remove. Assembling the right way is dependent on this. The process of fixing your faucet leak will not be complete if you can’t assemble what you disassembled. So, take pictures as you dismantle, if you must.
Now that you know the leaking handle, the next step in fixing the faucet is to remove the handle from the base of the faucet. This process is relatively easy for handles without screws. All you need are your hands to turn the handle leftwards. Handles with screws require screwdrivers.
By removing the handle, you expose the cartridge held by the brass nut. To remove the cartridge, you must unscrew the nut. Once this is done, take out the cartridge. Remember to take note of the cartridge placement because you would need to replace it. You would also need to change the cartridge to stop the leak.
You can get a new cartridge from most hardware stores or, better still, buy directly from a Moen faucet supplier.
Assemble the removed parts:
To assemble, install the new cartridge into the faucet. Ensure the placement is correct. You can look at the pictures you took. After placing the cartridge, screw the brass nut back in place.
The nut mustn’t be loose because it may cause leakage again. So, tighten the brass nut properly. To check if it is tight enough, you can turn on the shut-off valve. If there is no leak, then you can proceed to put back the faucet handle.
To tighten the handle, turn right. The same goes for screwing handles with bolts/screws. Finally, you can turn on the shut-off valves for both handles when everything has been properly fitted.
Moen bathroom faucets are of superior quality, but this doesn’t mean that faults wouldn’t arise as you use them. Many of these faults can be dealt with quickly. First, you need to know how to do simple things like removing your bathroom faucet handles.
Removing faucet handles is a straightforward process that requires precision. But, get it right, and you’re on your way to handling your faulty faucet.