I'm replacing a sink faucet and when I try to turn the shutoffs clockwise a small water spray starts. Is this normal? They seem very hard to turn. Do these need to be replaced? I haven't attempted to use the main shutoff in the basement yet either. Should I be making sure that works before messing with an individual shutoff on a sink?
Definitely make sure your main shutoff works first! I've seen lots of those old angle stops get fouled up by minerals and spray when you turn them. They'll eventually leak all the time. If they're 1/2" compression copper coming out of the wall you'll likely be able to replace the valve and reuse the compression nut and ferrule from the old valve.