Installing a Kitchen Tap

Installing a Kitchen Tap

First make sure both the hot and cold water is turned off before removing the old tap if there is no isolator valve under the tap.

Be mindful of the water pressure. If you have an unvented water cylinder or a combination boiler then continental style high pressure taps should work, if you have a tank in the loft then stick to British standard taps. 

Taps fitted today mostly come with an isolation valve to allow water to be turned off to a tap without turning off the entire houses water. If the tap you are removing doesn’t have an isolator valve then fitting one would be recommended.

Before removing the old tap there are a few things that need to be considered. Firstly, whilst new taps are all made to standard dimensions if you are installing the tap into an old sink make sure that they will fit. The holes to fit mixer taps should be 195mm or 7.75in for sinks.

Also note that the holes in older basins might be square, not round. This could mean that modern taps that come with smaller bodies might not cover the hole. If this is the case then cover the holes with some chrome cover plates first.

To remove the old tap, first turn off the water at the mains and drain the pipes through the taps. Try to use a lower tap on the system to make sure any remaining water is removed.

Using a claw spanner undo the tap connectors and back nuts on the underside of the sink. Be careful of the taps turning, if this should start to happen ask someone to hold the tap.

Alternatively you can use a block of wood to act as a lever to hold the tap steady by using the wood as a support by putting it between the tap spout and the side of the kitchen sink.
If the old taps will not move then it is often easier to cut through the brass back nut with a hacksaw, and use an old screwdriver to force the nut to open.

Fitting the new tap

If the new tap is a single tap then you avoid it turning when turning it off by fitting an anti-rotation washer, which should come with the tap, so they are held steady.

Clean the area around the tap first and fit the new taps by putting the tap through the hole with the anti-rotation washer already on the upper side.

If the sink is thin then use a plastic top-hat space washer on the underside and tighten the back nuts. Keeping the tap steady, use a wrench or box spanner to tighten the back nuts.



The old pipe-work can be used if it fits, if it doesn’t or is awkward then it is easier to cut the pipes back and use new connectors. If you can use the old pipe-work then make sure new fibre washers are fit.

With connectors the easiest type to fit are the braided flexible type, make sure the rubber or fibre washers are in the connectors before screwing them on.  

Single-hole mixers have copper tails which are flexible. However, do not try to bend the tails past 45 degrees as the pipe will kink. The tails allow for easy connection as they are longer meaning easier viewing whilst connecting the pipes. To connect the pipes compression or push-fit fitting work best.  





Two-hole mixer taps are different to the single-hole taps as they need to be sealed both above and below the sink with special washers that will be provided with the tap. As said above be careful to check that the distance between the hole will fit the tap. Connect the tap end of the flexible connectors before fitting them to the mains.


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