How To Remove A Stuck Faucet Nut

Few things are as frustrating as a stuck faucet, mainly caused by corroded or frozen nuts. Unfortunately, getting worked up over it won’t increase your chances of loosening it. To help you out, we’ve created this quick guide to show you how to remove a stuck faucet nut.

When it comes to how to remove a stuck faucet nut, you need to gather the necessary tools and supplies, clean up the area, use your tools and some heat to unstick the faucet nut, and then remove it.

For more detailed steps on how to remove a stuck faucet nut, read on!

Tools You Need

You will need the following tools to remove a stuck faucet nut:

  • Screwdriver
  • Wrench
  • Hairdryer for heating
  • Wire brush
  • Hacksaw
  • Pair of pliers

Steps For Removing A Stuck Faucet Nut

Note that you don’t have to go through all the steps in this guide to remove a stuck plumbing nut. Before you start, though, you need to turn off the water valves. If you can’t find the shutoff valve close to the sink, you may have to switch off the main valve that supplies water to the entire house.

Step 1: Cleaning the faucet

Most likely, the nut has corroded from mineral deposits. Cleaning the nut with a cleaning agent should remove any deposits that make it difficult to unscrew.

To do this:

  • Use an acid-based cleaner to remove dirt and debris from the screw
  • Use a wire brush to clean off any remaining deposits around the nut
  • Once the surface of the nut is clear, pour any kind of penetrating oil in and around the nut
  • Let the oil penetrate the nut for about a day
  • Use a wrench to remove the nut

Step 2: Using a Wrench

Depending on the type of faucet, you can use an adjustable wrench or basin wrench to attempt to loosen it.

Here’s how to do that:

  • Use a wrench to loosen the nut. You may need to apply extra force like hitting with a hammer to force the nut to move. That’s because stuck faucet nuts are likely already frozen, so the chances it would move immediately are slim.
  • If hitting with a hammer doesn’t work, use a wrench to tighten the nut further. By doing this, you will know if the nut is completely stuck or just difficult to move. If it moves while tightening it, this means it may also move in the opposite direction with more force. If it doesn’t move, attempt to use more force one more time using a hammer.
  • Put the wrench away and move on to the next method if the nut won’t budge.

Step 3: Apply Heat

First things first, you need to be extra cautious if you must use this method. Make sure there are no combustible materials nearby. Also, ensure that the heat doesn’t get close to any plastic components in the sink drain, which could destroy those parts.

It is usually good to cover all flammable and plastic components of the plumbing fixture using flame-resistant materials before heating the stuck faucet nut.

The idea behind heating the nut is to expand it enough to make it easier to unscrew. An ideal heating appliance would be a hairdryer because it can deliver heat in a specific direction. However, you can also use a heat gun or propane torch if you don’t have a hairdryer.

Here’s how to remove a stuck faucet nut by applying heat:

  • Apply heat from the hairdryer around the area of the nut for some minutes
  • If everything goes according to plan, the nut will expand and fall off by itself. If it doesn’t fall off, attempt to unscrew it with a wrench
  • You can use a propane torch or heat gun if the hairdryer is not providing enough heat to loosen the sink faucet nut

Step 4: Cutting the nut

You will need to cut off the nut when all else fails. Be careful when you handle and operate the saw.  Here’s what to do:

  • Find an ideal position to operate the saw
  • Place the saw at the top of the stuck nut and attempt a cut from top to bottom
  • Once you have cut through the nut, use your set of pliers to finish the work by breaking off the stuck nut from the faucet

Once the nut is out of the way, you can repair or replace the faucet. In many cases, you won’t need to cut the nut with a saw unless it has been stuck for too long before you noticed it. 


There you have it; four straightforward steps for how to remove a stuck faucet nut. Keep in mind that the major cause of stuck faucet nuts is corrosion. To avoid this, it is best to check the faucet nuts frequently and use a wire brush to clean off any debris and visible corrosion.

Call for professional help if all of the steps outlined above didn’t get the nut unstuck.