How to Fix a Leaky Faucet

leaky faucet

When waking up in the morning, going into the bathroom or kitchen and faced with a leaky faucet is a nightmare you don’t want. Let’s be honest whenever you see a leaky faucet it does irritate us as it water going to waste and also the chance of having higher water bills.

The best part of a leaky faucet is that you can fix the problem yourself with the necessary tools.

Get started on Repairs

The first step in repairing a leaky faucet is to gather the require tools and materials. These might include adjustable wrench, ball-peen hammer, tongue and groove pilers, deep socket wrench, basin wrench, screw driver, allen wrench and long nose pliers. You should identify the faucet you have and then buy the materials accordingly.

The different types of faucets are:

Compression faucet has two handles; one for the cold and the other for the hot. It utilizes a threaded stem for proper compression of the washer.

Waterless faucets are of three varieties

(1) The ball faucet that contains the ball bearing

(2) The cartridge faucet that contains the cartridge and has a decorative handle

(3) The ceramic disk faucet that contains the ceramic cylinder.

Once you have recognized the style of faucet you have and bought the requisite materials you must turn off the supply of water by turning off the valves, if it still leaking then turns off from the main supply. You will need to stop the sink drain so that you do not lose any small materials such as the screws or washers.

Fixing the Washer

This completely depends upon the faucet you have and it is different for each type. For the Compression faucet, you have to first remove the decorative cap and then the handle. Then unscrew the fixed faucet and remove it. At the end of the stem, you will find the washer that is held in its place by the washer screw. You have to remove the washer screw and put a new washer of same shape and size. Also check the valve and in case it has got worn out, replace this valve too.

Lubricate the stem using grease before starting the process of reassembling the faucet. Before you tighten the nuts and bolts, make sure that the stem is put midway so that the new washer is not tightened too hard.

Washerless Faucet

If the handle is leaking, then adjust or replace the ring or the can washer. If the spout is leaking, then replace the worn out springs and valve seats.

If the ball is corroded, then replace it. If the base is leaking, then you will need to install new O-rings and ensure that they fit the faucet. When you put it all together, make sure that the lug fits into the space of the faucet body properly.

Cartridge Faucet

In this faucet, the cartridge assembly gets worn out. You have to eliminate the trim cap and the handle. Next remove the screws of retainer nut and take away the cartridge. Do pay attention to which side the stem’s side that is flat and see which side it is facing. This is important as you may inadvertently reverse the hot and cold water. Change the O-rings of the old cartridge. Apply the grease that is heat proof and start the process of reassembling.

Reassembling the faucet:

This step is common for all the faucets, wherein you reassemble the faucet and turn on the valve to check for the leakage. If everything is alright, your faucet will stop leaking.

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