The sound of a dripping faucet is one that instills horror in the hearts of many. If you knew how much water you were wasting, it could even keep you up at night. That’s why it’s important not to wait. Fix that leaky faucet and leave your worries behind. Here are some ways to fix the leaky faucet that are easier enough for even a DIYer to handle:
Gather Your Tools
You are going to need the following tools from the toolbox:
- A set of hex keys or wrenches
- A replacement part or kit for the faucet
- A set of flathead and Phillips head screwdrivers
- A crescent wrench
- Rags for wiping up spills
Shut Off The Water
While it should be commonsense, you never want to forget to shut off the water running to the leaking faucet before getting to work. You can find a valve in one of two places—either under the sink or at the water supply for the entire household. Once you have the valve shut off, turn on the faucet and leave it open so any water remaining in the lines can run out.
Next, search for some wet spots. If you know exactly where the leak is coming from, just make sure to mop up the water. Otherwise, you should search for the source of the leak. Is it the line? The valve? The base of the faucet? Or the faucet’s outlet? Sometimes a malfunction elsewhere can cause the dripping from the faucet, so check everything thoroughly before beginning.
Unscrew The Faucet
Next, you want to start dismantling the faucet. Take your screwdriver or Allen wrench to remove the coverings. Once the coverings are removed, unscrew the screws. Loosen the handle and gently lift it free.
You might want to insert a stopper or place something to cover the openings in the sink area to prevent anything from falling through the holes.
Check The Hardware
Faucets have a number of parts. One of those is the adjusting ring, which can loosen over time. If it looks loose, grab a pair of needle-nose pliers and then test the faucet to see if the leak persists. If you bought a repair kit, you can use the spanner tool instead.
Turn the cap clockwise to tighten it.
Next, look at the metal ball from the adjusting ring to see if it is damaged. If it’s worn or cracked, you should replace it.
There will also be springs and rubber rings beneath the ball. You can use the head of a screwdriver to pry them out. If either of these items is rusted or worn, you should replace them. Place the springs then the rubbers. Press them back into place with your finger or another blunt object.
Sometimes, your faucet will have a ceramic disc that can be removed. The disc cartridge usually has a plastic cover and 3 holes that are covered with rubber seals. You can replace these if they are looking old, dried, or covered in sediment.
If you don’t have handles on your faucet but a spout faucet, you can simply remove the neck of the unit then check the rings on the base. The o-rings are prone to getting old and creating cracks in the seal, which can result in a leak. Replace the rings. Before placing the new rings, lubricate them with some plumber’s grease.
When you are taking apart your faucet to repair a leak, take a picture with your phone of the starting condition so you have something double check once you’re finished. With that, you should be able to stop a faucet leak. If the leak persists after fixing the seats and tightening the hardware, it’s recommended that you call a local plumber.