How To Reverse Faucet Handle Direction

In the engineering world, when you need to fix a problem in your construction, sometimes you will come across multiple issues that may have contributed to the issue that has just arisen. 

There might be more than one thing causing your situation in some situations, and the required fixes might be complex or take longer than expected.

As seen in this blog, it is not always a simple matter of simply turning a faucet handle around as some other parts of the bathroom’s piping might be affected. However, with our experience, you can learn how to reverse faucet handle direction quickly.

Plumber fix kitchen faucet
Plumber fix kitchen faucet

Which Direction Should A Faucet Handle Turn?

A faucet’s function can determine whether you can turn in either direction to get water to flow out. As a general rule, handles that cross over one another will only allow moisture to flow out if they’re turned in the same way. 

For example, turning counterclockwise will depend on water, and turning clockwise turns it off. However, if the handles are levers instead, anything against its nature becomes challenging. 

Turning the hot-water handle toward you won’t work unless the cold-water one is pushed far away. 

This principle allows you to change your mind by pushing or pulling the levers with your hands – basically turning them toward or away from your body depending on how long you need water flowing.

Why Do You Have To Fix Faucets That Turn The Wrong Way? 

In the hands of a new homebuyer, some repairs may seem daunting. For instance, Moen handles have temperature diverters to prevent scalding. When turning past its bottom threshold, these devices should reset themselves by rotating back into place. 

But if the lever’s turning orientation is backward, it could lock up instead — causing it and other handle parts to stick or move in an unwelcoming manner. 

Don’t ignore this issue, or you could be left with a malfunctioning faucet as well as missed opportunities to stem damage from scalding water. 

Fortunately, there is always a fix for such problems — so long as you address them properly and promptly!

Which Way Do Hot And Cold Taps Go? 

It might be common knowledge that it used to be necessary to have a separate hot water tap outside of the sink, and in some cases, like in hotels today on old plumbing, the two taps are side by side. But do you know where it originated? 

Some people believe that the Hot/Cold taps being placed on opposite sides of the sink is an age-old practice dating back hundreds of years when hand pumps were used for most household water supplies. 

Since most people are right-handed, it is clear at the time to place the hot water tap on the left – closest to their dominant hand—and for cold water to flow from a pipe to their right-hand side. 

How To Reverse Faucet Handle Direction 

Modern Faucets

Tools And Supplies:

  • Screwdriver
  • pliers 
  • wrench 
  • Towel


Step 1: Turn the water supplies off to the faucet and shut off the cold water. Put a towel on the drain to allow for blind disassembly.

Step 2: Use your fingernail to lift the decorative cap or button off the handle. Use either an Allen wrench or a small screwdriver to unscrew the set screw. 

When you have completed this, remove the hold and replace it with a new one while also swapping out the stem along with it.

Step 3: Using your hands or a similar flat-edged instrument, separate the cartridge holding nut.

Step 4: Remove your cartridge by grabbing its stem and gently pulling it straight upwards out of the body of the tap valve.

Step 5: To ensure that you have aligned the two tabs of your cartridge along with their respective slots on the valve body, we have taken this time to twist it around by 180 degrees before reinserting it into its slot to lock things into place.

Step 6: Thread the ring onto the stem, then attach the grip back onto it. Affix the cap to the top of the stem.

Step 7: Switch on the cold and hot water faucets. Check for correct functionality and rotational orientation.

Old Faucets

Old models of kitchen faucets differ from those manufactured and distributed today. For example, suppose your model has a problem with a handle. In that case, the repair process will be different from modern devices typically relied upon nowadays that save you time and energy. 

Older-style ones may contain compression valves or stem weaved to turn in any direction. Typically, the right-hand one is used for the hot water side but depends on its age and history of use. 

It could have worn down or even been replaced with another one entirely, so you either have to obtain a fresh set separately or replace it yourself if you don’t source parts.


We hope you enjoyed our post about how to reverse faucet handle direction! The fixing method is not challenging, so your patience is key to success. 

If you have any other questions about faucet handles or faucet repairs, please contact us anytime. Thanks for reading. We are always excited when one of our posts can provide helpful information

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Edvian Berrios is a homeowner who has become a plumbing expert through self-study and practical experience. Despite not being a professional plumber, Berrios's deep understanding of fixtures and do-it-yourself techniques has enabled him to successfully handle even the most challenging plumbing problems in his own homes.