How to fix a leaky faucet

A leaking tap in the kitchen, bathroom or shower is primarily an irritating and unsightly phenomenon. Dripping drops or trickles of water can cause deposits and rust that will be difficult to remove over time. In addition, there are water losses, i.e. higher bills for water that we do not actually use. You probably know how to repair a leaking faucet, but if you do not have the right tools and basic knowledge about plumbing repairs, then you better trust a professional. An experienced plumber or handyman will help. How to fix a leaky faucet?

The cause of the leaky faucet

We try to determine the cause of the leak. In the case of two-handle mixers (with a separate knob for hot and cold water), the sealing of the joints of moving parts is ensured by rubber gaskets. Replacing worn gaskets will usually solve the problem – however, locate the leak. Water may leak through the spout (when the tap is turned off), the spout nut, next to the handwheel pin, or between the head and the stuffing box. When we determine the source of the water leak, close the water supply and drain the remaining water from the installation.

leaking tap

Old style tap water leaks are most often caused by damage to the seals. Remember that seals are products with a limited life. Over the years, they lose their elasticity, undergo microcracks and can pass water droplets. In this situation, just open the tap and replace the gaskets with new ones. The exchange will be very simple and the costs will be symbolic. In the case of new type batteries (single-lever), the most common cause of water leakage is damage to the head (i.e. the so-called mixer). The purchase of this item will be much more expensive than the purchase of seals. It is worth considering then whether it would be better to replace the entire battery.

Gasket replacement

If it is a matter of replacing the gasket in the tap, you need to unscrew the tap body and remove the valve. Under it is a nut that holds the seal. Unscrew it, remove the damaged element and install a new one. The nut is screwed back on quite tightly, then the valve and body return to place.

Replacement of single lever mixer head

Modern single lever mixers instead of seals have durable ceramic heads. In this case, water leakage may mean that the entire battery needs to be replaced with a new one. Before we decide to buy a new battery, we can still try to tighten or replace the head in the leaking tap.

We start by cutting off the hot and cold water supply. The next step is to remove the red-blue cap (it can be prized with a penknife). In this way we get to the inner screw (unscrew it with the Allen key). Thanks to this, it will be possible to disassemble the tap handle and ring. Under the ring there is a large nut tightening the head – it is worth checking if it is tightened first. If not – it can be a source of water leakage. Otherwise, unscrew the cap to get to the head of our battery.


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