5 Tips for Fixing a Leaky Faucet
Leaky faucets can be a major cause of annoyance. That slow but steady plunk of water onto your sink or bathroom floor can also ramp up your utility bill. Not to mention the wastage that occurs — did you know that even a small faucet can waste up to 3 gallons of water per day?
Thankfully, repairing your faucets is not complete rocket science. Even plumbing novices can repair leaky faucets on their own with these simple tips.
Check what type of faucet you have
Depending on the type of faucet, you will need different replacement parts and, sometimes, special tools. Some of the most common faucet types include rotary ball, cartridge-style, and ceramic disc. Knowing the brand of your faucet also helps, especially in ordering replacement parts. If you’re having a difficulty in identifying the parts, the safest bet is to bring them to the plumbing supply or construction store for reference. You can also call the manufacturer of your faucet for help in locating partner stores to find the parts.
Prepare your tools
While you’ll need different kinds of parts for each faucet type, the primary tools you will need are a set of Allen wrenches to remove the handle, plus a pair of slip-joint or thin-nose pliers, and screwdrivers. For more temporary fixes, you’ll also most likely need thread seal tape or plumber’s tape.
Check where the leak is then turn off the valve
The kind of repairs that you will make will depend on the location of the leak – there are usually two places to check: the base and the end spout. Once you’ve located the leak, you can turn off the valve to stop the flow of water to the problem faucet. This is usually under the sink. If you can’t find a shutoff valve, you probably need to turn the water main off, which will cut supply of water to your entire home.
Remember the order of how you removed the parts
This is crucial in reassembling your faucet once you’ve repaired the leak. If you must, record the removal process on video so you can review the process later. It also helps to lay the parts aside in the order they were removed. Your newly repaired faucet may not work as well if you’ve put the parts back on wrong.
Clean old parts and/or replace broken ones
Check each part thoroughly, especially the interior of the valve for small pieces of broken-down gasket or mineral deposits. You might also want to inspect the aerator and the faucet body itself to see if there are any plugged holes that might interfere with the water flow. You can soak these parts in vinegar to loosen the accumulated dirt, then scrub off with an abrasive pad. Once you’ve cleaned out these parts, you can proceed with replacing the broken parts and reassembling your faucet.
Once you’ve cleaned and replaced the parts, gradually open the valve to restore water supply. Leave the faucet on for a while to get rid of the air that accumulated in the pipes while the supply was turned off. This process also helps flush out any debris that may have been loosened during the removal and cleaning of the parts.
Still having trouble in repairing those leaky faucets? Give Handy Crew Services a call. A team of experts are ready to help you with any plumbing troubles.