How to Fix a Leaky Faucet
Have you been the victim of the annoying and incessant drip, drip, dripping noise of your leaky kitchen or bathroom faucet? Not only is it a significant annoyance, but a leaky faucet can also lead to higher water bills, a lot of wasted water, and the risk of developing bigger problems and damage in the future.
Today, we will be walking you through how to fix a leaky faucet and what some of the more common causes of a leaky faucet are, so you know what to look for.
Common Causes of a Leaky Faucet
Faucets are considered mechanical devices and as such have many parts that can eventually become worn and damaged over time.
Washers. This is what is inside the valve seat, and friction causes wear and tear on the washer which can then cause a leak. You can also experience a leak if the wrong size washer is used in the faucet.
Seals. When seals become worn and collect sediment, they can become less effective and can result in a leak.
O-rings. These hold the faucet handle in place but can begin to wear down and loosen over time. When this happens, you will notice that the leak occurs by the faucet's handle.
Other loose parts. In addition to the parts already mentioned, there are other parts including the adjusting rings and stem screws that also face wear and tear and may require tightening or even replacing.
Corrosion. Water sediment begins to collect and erode the valve seat which causes the leak to occur in the spout area of the faucet.
Fixing a Bathroom Faucet
Since bathroom faucets are most often ball-type faucets or compression faucets, you will typically find that the leak is due to a washer or O-ring issue. Therefore, to fix this leak, simply remove the decorative cap from the faucet, unscrew the handle and nut and remove the old washer and replace it. You should also go ahead and install a new O-ring as well before you put the faucet back together.
Fixing a Kitchen Faucet
Most kitchen faucets are ball-type faucets, and they have several different parts. Because of this, you may find that it is much more difficult to pin down the problem for the kitchen faucet than it is to find the issue with the bathroom faucet.
To fix the kitchen faucet leak, remove the handle set screw and then lift off the handle. You can then remove the cap and collar and loosen the faucet cam to remove the washer and rotating ball.
Once this is done, you can then use needle nose pliers to remove the faucet's springs and inlet seals and then cut off the O-rings. Plumbers grease should then be applied to the new O-rings you install before you then install new springs, valve seats, and washers.
For other faucets around the homelike the laundry room, for exampleyou can follow the same steps and will often find that the leak is stemming from worn or loose washers or O-rings.