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Moen Bathroom Faucet Handle Loose: What To Do Next?

Faucets are one of the few appliances that get used every day. That’s why faucet handles being loose is nothing out of the ordinary. But having some tricks up your sleeves can save you from this trouble. 

Why is your Moen bathroom faucet handle loose? 

A loosened screw inside the handle is most likely to be the problem. It fails to keep the inside ring in one place. As a result, the handle feels wiggly. But it can also happen due to a worn-out cartridge. The stem of a worn-out cartridge can be slippery or damaged. 

Anyhow, not all faucets are the same. Because of that, it requires an elaborate discussion. That’s why we’ve provided and explained the ways to fix the handles. 

Keep reading if you want to find out more about faucet handle fixes!

Possible Reasons Behind Loosened Faucet Handles

Before we talk about fixes, let’s look at the reasons that cause this issue. Because nobody wants to face the same issues over and over again. 

On top of that, if left neglected, this can cause a bigger issue. For example, a shower diverter can often fall out due to negligence.

Loose Screw 

Faucet handles have an inner ring that keeps the handle in one place. Those rings are kept tightened with the help of a screw. 

If this screw gets loosened, the inner ring starts to rotate slightly. In other words, the handles don’t feel sturdy anymore. Instead, it starts wiggling as a result. 

Worn Cartridge

A faucet handle is directly connected to the cartridge. A cartridge has 3 bodily parts. A stem, a bonnet nut, and ceramic discs. 

Among them, the stem connects the handle to the cartridge. Whenever you turn your handle, the stem also rotates with it. 

Stripped Screws

Although really rare, it’s possible to face wiggling due to stripped screws. If you find a stripped screw underneath the handle, it’s most likely the issue. 

This requires a different approach than normal. You have to replace the screws entirely. Fortunately, it’s super easy to remove stripped screws from faucets

How Can You Fix A Loose Faucet Handle? 

Now that we’ve cleared the possibilities, it’s time to fix the problem. It only takes 5-10 minutes at most. 

Gather these necessary tools to start the procedure- 

  • Flathead Screwdriver
  • Philip Screwdriver 
  • Hex Screwdriver (optional)
  • Crescent Wrench (optional) 
  • Grease
  • Cartridge 
  • Soft Clothes

Manage these tools as soon as possible and you can get started. 

Step-1: Turn Off the Water Supply 

Turn off the water supply before attempting the fix first. Otherwise, the faucet will overflow the sink instantly. 

But you’re not done yet. There’s still water inside the supply line. Turn on the faucet to drain it completely. This also resets the overall pressure of the faucet.

Be sure to plug in the sink after you’re done. Otherwise, you’ll risk losing screws or other parts down the sink. 

Step-2: Detach the Faucet Handles

With the water turned off, it’s time to remove the handles. Depending on different types, you may require different tools for this job- 

Widespread Faucet

Widespread faucets are very common nowadays. They generally have two individual handles. 

These handles can be easily removed with your bare hands! Turn the faucet handles clockwise and the handle will come off right away. 

Single-handle Faucet

Most single-handled lever faucets have a screw in the middle. The screw is sealed off by a plastic cap. 

Remove the cap and then use a flashlight to check the screw type. These faucets often use a hex screw. In that case, you’ll need a hex screwdriver. 

Step-3: Tighten the Screw Inside

If the handles are dirty and stained, give it a nice little wash. It’ll get rid of all the dirt inside and out. 

Widespread Moen Faucet

Take a flashlight or move to an illuminated area for an inspection. Try to look for a screw inside. 

Most ring-based handles use a screw in the middle so it should be easy. After that, try to rotate the inner ring to check if it’s wiggling. 

If the ring wiggles, you have to tighten the screw. Using a Philip screwdriver will make it super easy. 

In some cases, you might find the inner ring faulty or stripped. In that case, you’ll need to change the faucet handle entirely. 

Though Delta and Peerless faucets are compatible with each other, Moen faucets aren’t. That’s why you have to get a specific handle instead. 

Single-handle Moen Faucet

But if it’s a single-handle faucet, don’t be too fast. Check if there’s grease inside or not. Because you might need them if you don’t have grease with you. 

You may need to get some grease if it’s not covered with it properly. Apply some grease around the stem and the inside of the handle. 

Take a look at the screw while you’re doing it. These faucets don’t have a ring-based system and only have one hex screw.

If the screws are perfect, place the handle back in a default position. Tighten the screws properly using a screwdriver afterward.

Detaching the handle also exposes the cartridge underneath. Don’t forget to check while you’re fixing the handles! 

Look for any damages or scratches on the cartridge stems. Replace the cartridge if the stem is worn out or damaged. 

To help you with that, we’ve listed our top picks- 

Cartridge 1
Cartridge 2

You can now choose whichever you want and replace the old one easily! 

Step-4: Reinstall the Handle 

Most of the work is done and it’s time to finish the rest. All that remains now, is to put back the handle in its place. 

Get the handle and place it firmly on the cartridge. If it’s a single-handle faucet, put the screw in. Get the proper screwdriver and tighten the handles. 

As for wide-spread faucets, just use your bare hands. Place the faucet handle in the default position and rotate it counterclockwise. 

That completes the fix. Give the faucets a try and check if they’re sturdy enough. Don’t forget to turn on the water supply and check for any leakages. 


Question: How do you remove a screwless faucet handle?

Answer: Most single-handle faucets can often be screwless. Actually, they do have screws but it’s hidden. Look for a plastic cap colored red or blue. Take it off to expose a screw underneath. 

Question: Why is the faucet handle hard to turn?

Answer: There can be a variety of problems behind this. From mineral deposit accumulation to a worn-out cartridge, anything can cause the problem. Luckily, you can fix the problem instantly, by taking a look inside. 

Question: Can you use WD-40 on the faucet?

Answer: Yes, WD-40 can be used on the faucet. They aren’t abrasive and therefore don’t ruin the texture of the faucet. Simply use a little bit of WD-40 and it’ll loosen the tight screw right away. 

Final Words

That was everything we could deliver and explain on Moen bathroom faucets handle loose. We hope these solutions have answered all of your possible questions.

Finally, good luck with your faucets!