How to Repair a Washing Machine Faucet

A broken washing machine faucet can cause your washing machine to malfunction, or worse, leak water all over your utility room, resulting in water damage.

Repair the faucet for your washing machine.Repair the faucet for your washing machine.
Luckily, this problem can be cured by repairing the washing machine faucet. These faucets are where the washing machine connects to your home's water supply and pulls in water for rinsing and washing. As with any plumbing project, the main thing to remember is to make sure you have the water supply to the faucet cut off before you begin.

Turn off the main water supply for your house or apartment. The main water supply shut-off valve is usually installed next to the water meter. In a condo or apartment, this will be located along the side of the building; in a house, this will typically be located in a utility box buried in the front or side yard. Rotate the main water valve with a pair of pliers or wrench to turn off the water.

Turn off the washing machine where you want to repair the faucet. Either unplug the washing machine or cut off the power to the circuit where the washing machine is installed. Pull the washing machine away from the wall or anything located behind it so you can access the faucet.

Hold a towel underneath the faucet. Use the pliers to unscrew the coupling connecting the washer hose to the faucet. Use the towel to catch any water that spills out.

Unscrew the faucet handle screw. Pull the faucet handle up and off the stem. Use a wrench to unscrew the first hexagonal nut (the packing nut) at the top of the stem.

Unscrew the faucet stem from the faucet by unscrewing the second hexagonal nut at the stem base. Lift the stem up and out of the faucet.

Check the faucet stem for damage, such as cracks. The stem should be replaced if cracks are present.

Turn the faucet stem over and examine the rubber washer at the bottom. If the washer is worn or damaged, it needs to be replaced. Unscrew the screw at the bottom and remove the rubber washer. Replace it with a new washer. Secure it with the screw.

Rub the threads on the stem with steel wool to clean off any caulk or tape. Apply pipe thread compound to the threads on the stem. Insert the stem in the faucet. Tighten it with a wrench.

Use a pair of needle-nose pliers to remove the packing material from the top of the stem. Replace it with new packing material. Apply silicone grease to the underside of the packing nut. Slip the packing nut over the stem and secure it with a wrench.

Replace the faucet handle. Secure it with the screw.

Wrap the faucet threads with plumber's tape. Reconnect the washing machine hose and secure the coupling with a pair of pliers by tightening it clockwise.

Restore the main water supply.

Restore power to the washing machine. Run a short test load. Watch the washing machine faucet and hose for leaks. Tighten any nuts or couplings if necessary.

Things You Will Need

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Rubber washer
  • Steel wool
  • Pipe thread compound
  • Packing material
  • Plumber's tape

Tip

  • Take your old faucet parts into the hardware or plumbing store to help in choosing the correct sizes for replacement.

About the Author

Nathan McGinty started writing in 1995. He has a Bachelor of Science in communications from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Arts in international journalism from City University, London. He has worked in the technology industry for more than 20 years, in positions ranging from tech support to marketing.