Dripping faucet: how to identify the problem and repair the leak?

A dripping faucet not only causes annoying noises, but can also quickly become expensive. With a little know-how, you can repair the damage in no time. All you have to do is identify the problem and then repair the leak.

If a tap only drips for a few days, this is hardly significant for you in terms of costs. It is only over time that the leak becomes truly costly and can cause the cost of your water bill at the end of the year to differ significantly from that of the previous year. Take your time to analyze the problem in order to find an adequate solution. In most cases, limescale is the cause of a dripping faucet. In this case, you do not need to contact the plumber or an emergency service. With the right tools and a bit of patience, you can fix the mess in just minutes.

Tartar maintenance

If your faucet is leaking, it may simply be scaled up. Nothing like a good cleaning to declutter it from all that limestone. Take a look at how your faucet is made up and take it apart. Then soak the various scaled pieces in white vinegar. Scrub with a brush if the most stubborn dirt does not go away on its own. Then reassemble your faucet.

Aging or porosity of the joint

Whether you have a mixer tap – with two handles one for hot water and the other for cold water, or a mixer tap – a single handle that you operate to the right or the left, often your tap leaks in due to a defective, aging or excessively porous joint. Water escapes from it, even when the tap is closed. However, with modern, high-quality seals, this practically does not happen anymore.

Replacing the rubber seal or cartridge

When the faucet leaks, the only thing you can do is fix it. Whether you have a mixer or mixer tap, all you have to do is replace the seal. In a mixer tap, the gasket seals the space between the cartridge and the other parts. It may be the washer piece at the base of your faucet handles that is particularly worn.

Shut off the water before any repairs

Of course, before starting any work, your water supply must be turned off. To do this, close the stop or angle taps under the sink.

Replacing the cartridge in a faucet with mixer tap

Do you have a single lever faucet? In this case, a cartridge sits inside the faucet and mixes cold and hot water. If the faucet drips, it is often due to a defective cartridge. Whether this can be replaced depends on the model. With branded products, change is usually possible. Inexpensive models often cannot be repaired and must be completely replaced. In any case, whatever type of repair you have to carry out, start by completely dismantling your faucet in order to know exactly which parts you need to buy.

Replacing the sealing ring of a mixer tap

To replace the sealing ring of a mixer tap, you must first remove the valve from the handle. Then use the screwdriver to loosen the handle screw. The handle can then be easily removed. And the gasket too. You can replace it with a new one. Or if it’s just dirty, heavily soiled, but undamaged, you can put it in a vinegar bath until the deposits come off and it’s almost like new.

Leak that persists after troubleshooting

If your faucet is still dripping after you’ve taken action, this may be normal. Wait a few minutes, especially if you replaced a seal. Because it may need a little time to expand and play its role again. If really, despite everything, the tap continues to leak, try to see if you have reassembled it correctly. It may be that in a rush you have reversed some parts or screwed some others incorrectly. Take your time and mount your faucet again carefully.

Higher damage

Sometimes, however, just replacing rubber elements is not enough. The damage is sometimes deeper and should not be overlooked. Some obviously require some expertise. For example, the upper part of the faucet may be broken and must be completely replaced.

Call a professional for larger damage

The plumbing work like the rest must be clean and neat. Because in this case we touch the drinking water supply system, this is not nothing in terms of hygiene. So in the event of significant or fairly deep damage, it is better to call in a specialist.

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