What is the Difference Between a 4-Inch Centerset & a Single-Lever Bathroom Faucet?

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A bathroom's centerset faucet also often is referred to as a 4-inch centerset. The measurement represents the distance between the faucet's handles. A bathroom faucet using a single hole in a sink not only mounted differently than a 4-inch centerset model, but the faucet itself might operate differently.

Mounting a 4-inch Centerset

  • Mounting a 4-inch centerset faucet requires a sink or countertop to have a three-hole centerset configuration. Measure the distance between the center points of the two outer mounting holes in the sink or countertop to be certain that the faucet will fit before installing it. Hot and cold water supply lines rise up and connect from underneath to the faucet's respective handles when the faucet is placed on the sink or countertop. The faucet's spout sits over the center mounting hole in the sink or countertop.

Single-Hole Mounting

  • Unlike a three-hole mounting configuration, a single-hole mounting configuration combines the spout and faucet's handle or handles through the mounting hole. This faucet has two separate inlet tubes, one for hot water and another for cold water. Both fit down through the single-mounting hole. Hot and cold water supply lines rise up to connect to the respective hot or cold water inlet tubes for the faucet.

Faucet Handles

  • A faucet that requires a single-mounting hole does not mean that the faucet must have only one lever to control the flow of hot and cold water. It can have two handles, one standing on each side of the faucet spout, just like a 4-inch centerset faucet. However, a 4-inch centerset faucet needs three mounting holes and cannot be used with a sink or countertop's single-hole configuration.

Replacing a 4-inch Centerset

  • A 4-inch centerset faucet uses three holes for mounting, but this can be replaced with a single-lever faucet without also replacing the sink or countertop with a single hole. Because the single handle and spout of the faucet are mounted on a single base, or its deckplate, the deckplate's length usually will cover all three holes. The hot and cold water inlet tubes still are inserted down through the middle hole and connected underneath the faucet.

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