The Basics of Faucet Leak Repair
Read This BEFORE You Try to Fix a Leaky Faucet On Your Own
Nothing is more annoying than the constant drip, drip, drip of a leaky faucet. If you’ve got the right tools, a leaky faucet in the kitchen or bathroom is one of the easiest DIY fixes around the house. However, keep in mind that all faucets are not alike. Here are some basic, leaky faucet tips and insight that do-it-yourselfers should know before they start taking things apart and trying to put them back together..
Types of Faucets
- Compression Faucets: Usually found in homes with older plumbing, the compression faucet is fairly common. There is a knob for hot water and another for cold water. When the knobs are turned open, the faucet opens and water flows through. Compression faucets leak when the washers on the knobs become worn or damaged. To fix a leaky compression faucet you generally only need to replace the washers.
- Washerless Faucets: Washerless faucets are another common type found in many homes; ball faucets, cartridge faucets, and disk faucets are all washerless fixtures. Despite their name, these faucets do have washers, along with many other components that allow them to operate properly. Any one of these components can fail and cause a leak, though washerless faucets are among the most reliable plumbing fixtures you can install in your home.
- Ball Faucets: They have a single handle that rotates on a ball, letting you move the handle left or right for hot and cold water. When the adjusting ring becomes loose, ball faucets can develop leaks. Other common causes of leaks in these types of faucets include failed cam washers, worn springs or worn valve seats.
- Disk Faucets: They come in single or double handle configurations. Both have a ceramic disk mechanism that opens and closes to allow water through. Disk faucets rarely fail, but the most common sources of leaks are worn seals, o-rings, and stems.
- Cartridge Faucets: They are usually single handle units with a cartridge assembly that allows water to flow. Cartridge faucets have a series of o-rings that can become warped or worn, causing leaks.
For Most Faucet Leaks, Consult a Plumber
Even if you think you can handle a simple leak repair on your own, it’s still a good idea to call a plumber for a second opinion. Most plumbers will be happy to talk you through a basic repair job over the phone, offering helping advice and educating you about the proper tools and parts you’ll need. If the repair turns out to be more difficult than you bargained for, a plumber will gladly make an appointment to complete the repair for you.
Whether you choose to repair a leaky faucet yourself or feel more comfortable hiring a professional plumber, the sooner you deal with the problem the better. Even minor faucet leaks have a nasty habit of compounding into major plumbing problems…and that can quickly add up to thousands of dollars in more serious plumbing repairs. A leaky faucet that goes ignored too long can cause substantial water damage, erode pipes, and compromise the water pressure in your entire house. Furthermore, a faucet that drips just twice per second wastes about 100 gallons of water each month, which can jack up your water bill significantly.
The plumbing professionals at Horizon Services can quickly diagnose the cause of your faucet leak or other plumbing problem and fix the problem inexpensively and reliably. Call Horizon today!