Tap Head Replacement: What You Need to Know

 In GateKBlog

When a customer has a problem with their tap, they may reach for their phone, order a repair service online, or bring their broken appliance to a local repair shop. But in many cases, a simple repair is just a matter of replacing the tap’s tap head.

If you’ve ever struggled to thread a screw, you know how difficult it can be to change the head on a tap. Luckily, tap head replacement is quite easy and because most modern taps can be removed and replaced with a single screwdriver, you can save time and frustration by doing the repairs yourself.

A tap head is the part of a tap that turns as water is injected and pulled out. There are many different types of tap heads, each with its advantages and disadvantages.

Tap Head Replacement

Normally, when a customer calls in a broken tap, the plumber will inspect the tap and determine if the head needs to be replaced or if another type of repair is necessary.

If the tap is leaking water but the flow of water is slow or steady, it’s likely the spring inside the tap is broken. The plumber can fix this type of leak by replacing the spring inside the tap with a more durable spring.

Other times, the tap head may be cracked or damaged, but it still, works fine. In this case, the customer can choose to replace the tap head or continue to use the tap with a new coat of paint to protect it.

How to Check if You Need to Replace the Tap Head

You can determine if your tap head needs to be replaced by inspecting it. This is easiest to do if the tap is off, so no water is running through the tap and the head is dry.

First, remove the aerator and drain stopper. This will allow you to see inside the tap and check for any cracks or chips in the head. You can also use a flashlight if the tap is too dark to see inside.

After inspecting the head, you can determine if it needs to be replaced by looking at the gasket and head assembly. If these appear to be in good condition, you can save yourself some money and just replace the tap body instead of the head.

Replacing the Tap Head

If your tap head has chips, cracks, or is otherwise damaged, you’ll need to replace it. Luckily, replacing a tap head is easy.

Start by turning off the water to the faucet. Then, remove the aerator and drain stopper and take a look inside the tap. You should see a hex, square, or round hole cut out of the head.

Now, find the tap that needs to be replaced and turn off the water to that faucet. Wait at least 60 seconds before turning on the water to the new tap. This will give the pipe a chance to stop dripping. Then, remove the old tap head and attach the new one.

After the new head is on, turn the water back on and test the tap to see if it functions properly.

Tips for Removing and Replacing the Tap Head

Before you begin, you should take note of the following tips.

When removing a tap head, make sure to turn off the water to the faucet first. Also, be sure to shut off the water to the entire hydrant if you’re installing a hydrant-based system.

If the head is cracked or broken, you should stop using the tap immediately and contact a plumber. This will minimize the risk of exposure to harmful bacteria and viruses.

If the tap is a single handlebar faucet, you’ll need a basin wrench or large spanner to remove and replace the head. If the faucet has two handles and a plate, you can usually remove and replace the tap head replacement with a box wrench.

You should never use a prying tool or sharp object when removing or replacing a tap head. This could damage the tap and lead to leaks. Instead, use a screwdriver to remove or replace the head.


If your faucet is dripping but you’re unsure why, or if the dripping is constant, you should get a leak inspection done on your home. Leaky faucets are usually the result of a leaky pipe or sprays that haven’t been installed correctly. A qualified plumber can inspect your plumbing and identify the source of the leak. They can also repair the issue and find solutions to prevent future leaks.

If your faucet is not dripping but you’d like to change the head, you can do so easily. Most modern faucets can be unscrewed and removed or replaced with a new head. These types of repairs are best left to a professional, but if you want to save time and effort, you can do it yourself.


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