Leaks at Stop Valves and Supply Tubes

Leaks at Stop Valves and Supply Tubes

If water is dripping onto the floor of a cabinet below a sink, leaky supply tubes may be the cause. More likely, however, a stop valve or supply-tube connection is the culprit.

To find the source of a leak, shine a bright flashlight into the cabinet and feel the pipes and tubes, stopping to dry your hand every so often. You can also dry the area, place dry newspaper under the suspect plumbing, and watch for spots of water.

A solid chrome-plated copper supply tube looks and feels more stable than a flexible braided tube. But the solid tube is actually more likely to develop a leak because it is inflexible. When bumped a braided tube is less likely to be damaged. Still many people prefer the appearance of a solid tube.


Less than an hour to tighten nuts or install a new supply tube

Adjustable wrench, basin wrench, tubing bender, tubing cutter

Measuring and cutting a tube, connecting a compression fitting

Place a bucket or towel below the leaking plumbing; make the area comfortable for working.

Solid or braided supply tube

Tightening Stop Valve Connections: Step 1

If water leaks at the stop-valve spout, use an adjustable wrench to tighten the nut that connects the supply tube to the valve. (If the valve moves, brace it with another wrench.) If water leaks from where the supply tube enters the faucet, tighten the nut with a basin wrench.

Tightening Stop Valve Connections: Step 2

If that doesn't solve the problem, shut off the water at the stop valve. Unscrew the nuts at either end and remove the supply tube. Replace with a flexible braided tube or install a new solid supply tube.

Replacing a Solid Supply Tube Connection: Step 1

Bend a chrome-plated copper or plain copper supply tube carefully by hand or use a tubing bender.

Replacing a Solid Supply Tube Connection: Step 2

Insert one end of the tube into the faucet inlet, hold the other end near the stop valve, and mark it for a cut. Make the cut with a tubing cutter.

Replacing a Solid Supply Tube Connection: Step 3

At the upper end, slip on the mounting nut and a ferrule. Poke the tube into the faucet inlet, slide the ferrule up to the inlet, and tighten the nut. Slip a nut and ferrule onto the lower end of the tube and attach to the stop valve in the same way.

Comments (1)
Jacksdad66 wrote:

I have a question about my hose bib shot of valve. It doesn't shut off 100%. Can it be repaired or does it need to be replaced?

12/10/2012 01:49:06 PM Report Abuse
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