A leaky faucet can be annoying. That infernal drip, drip, dripping sound can be enough to keep you up at night. It’s not just an annoyance, though. That dripping will build over time, increasing your monthly water bill significantly. And it’s possible that it could cause water damage, pooling under your sink and becoming a real problem.
The good news is that leaky faucets can quite often be fixed, without any need to replace them. We’ll share a five-step fix-it plan here. If this doesn’t work, you can always call our plumbing pros to come take a look at your leak.
Fixing a Leaky Faucet: 5-Step Plan
- The first thing to do: turn the water off. Make sure you have the handles over the faucet in the off position, but also that you turn off the knob under the sink. Don’t allow your repair project to turn into a geyser.
- Next, remove the decorative parts of the handle knobs. You should be able to pry them off with a flat-head screwdriver. Underneath the knobs you’ll see a screw mounting the handle to the stem. Unscrew and gently remove the handle. Again, your flathead should suffice.
- From there, grab a wrench and use it to loosen the packing nut. You should see the stem; remove it too. Depending on the kind of faucet you have, the stem may pop off or you may have to twist it. Once you get it off, inspect it for any obvious signs of erosion or damage. If you do see damage, you may need to invest in some new parts.
- The next step is to remove the O-ring and washer from the valve seat. Insert replacements for both. It’s imperative that you get the exact right size for both the O-ring and the washer, so you may want to take the old parts to the hardware store to compare.
- Finally, reassemble everything. The order is washer/O-ring, stem, packing nut, screw, handle. Turn the water back on, gently, and see if you got rid of the leak. If not, the problem may be something a bit more complex, and you’ll want to call a plumber.
Hopefully this process will result in leak-free plumbing. If you have any doubts about it, book a service call from one of our B.C. plumbers, online today.