Fixing a Leaky Faucet

A leaky faucet causes water wastage, making you incur unnecessary costs. The dripping sound of a leaky faucet can also be very irritating. Additionally, leaky faucets can also cause water to pool under the sink, which can be dangerous. Fortunately, you can fix a leaky faucet easily. Doing so is relatively straightforward, and you don’t need special tools. If you are wondering what to do if you have a leaky faucet, here is a guide to help you. 

Causes of Leaky Faucets

There are several causes of leaky faucets. The most common ones include: 

  • Damaged cartridge
  • Malfunctioning O-ring
  • Corroded valve seat
  • Broken washers
  • Water pressure

A Step By Step Guide on How to Fix a Leaky Faucet

1. Turn Off the Water

Turning off the water should be the first step when fixing a leaky faucet. If you don’t do it, your house can get flooded. To turn off the water, look for shutoff valves located under the sink and tightly close them in a clockwise direction. If you can’t close the valves or they aren’t there, you’ll have to shut off the main water valve. After shutting it off, drain the water in the pipes and release pressure by opening the faucet. 

2. Disassemble the Handles

How you disassemble the handles depends on the fixture you have. You can disassemble the handle using a flathead screwdriver if you have a standard faucet. 

3. Detach the Inner Valve System

You will be able to see the inner valve after detaching the handle. You can pull or unscrew it, depending on the type of faucet you have. If it’s a cartridge faucet, you can pull it out. If it’s a compression faucet, you need to unscrew it using a screwdriver.

Remember to pay attention as you detach the system to avoid problems when reassembling the faucet. You can even take photos if you think you’ll forget. 

5. Check All the Parts

You need to check all the parts of the faucet for signs of damage, wear and tear. Most of the time, the O-rings, rubber washers and seals are what cause leakage. Inspect them thoroughly to see whether they are damaged. If you identify a damaged part, replace it. Take the removed parts to your local hardware store to make it easy to find the right replacement. 

6. Clean the Parts

Clean the inner parts of the faucet now that you have the opportunity. Use a cloth and white vinegar if there are mineral deposits. These deposits can result in leakages if they accumulate on the valve seat. 

7. Reassemble the Faucet

Reassemble the parts of the faucet by reversing the process. If you took photos before disassembling the faucet, it is time to use them. Remember not to be too rough as this could damage the fixtures. Turn the water on and then off to check if there are leakages.

Faucets leak for various reasons. You can try to fix the leakage and stop water wastage yourself to prevent increased water bills. However, if you are not able to fix the problem, consider hiring a plumber to fix it for you.