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Six of the More Common Causes for Leaking Faucets

Common Causes for Leaking Faucets

The faucets in your home can and do wear out over time from continued use. Most styles of faucets will give you some warning they are failing by starting to leak when shut off. The cause for a leaking faucet is often related to hardware failure. Some of the more common reasons faucets leak include:

  1. Bad Washers: The washer is the part inside the faucet that opens and closes when you turn the faucet on and off. The movement of the washer creates friction, which causes normal wear and tear. Eventually, the washer will not fit tightly against the valve seat and allow water to drip.
  2. Bad O-rings: O-rings are another internal part that can wear out. The O-ring is responsible for helping keep the seal in between the faucet cartridge or stem and the washer.
  1. Bad Seals: There are inlet seals in many faucet designs. These seals are what allow water to flow freely when the faucet is turned on and stop water when shut Seals can get damaged from excessive water pressure, sediment, and scale.
  2. Broken Hardware: If a piece of the internal hardware that makes up the faucet mechanism to turn the water on and off breaks, it may not function correctly. As a result, water could leak and drip out the faucet.
  3. Valve Seat Corrosion: At the base of the mechanism used to turn the faucet on and off is a valve seat. From repeated usage, as well as corrosion, the valve can wear out. A bad valve seat is easy to spot if you notice water dripping from around the handle area when the faucet is on or off.
  4. Bad Faucet Cartridge: In single handle faucet designs, there is a faucet cartridge inside that helps regulate the flow of hot and cold water. The cartridge can develop leaks as it starts to wear out.

How to Fix a Leaky Faucet

Even though it might appear simple, how to fix a leaky faucet is not as easy as it might seem. You need to remember there are several different parts and components that make up the entire faucet assembly. Some people mistakenly assume fixing their faucet is a DIY-type project, only to discover they end up doing more damage and still have to call a professional plumber.

Faucet Repair

For dual-handled faucets, the ones where you have separate hot and cold water handles, there is more than just a cover and retaining screw. Other hardware used for these handles include:

  • Inlet Valves
  • Washers
  • O-Rings
  • Faucet Stem
  • Seat Rings
  • Valve Seats

In single handle faucets, the internal components could consist of ceramic-disks, cartridges, and ball-type mechanisms. These parts are in addition to washers, O-rings, inlet valves, and so on. Removing the cover off of single handle faucets can also be very tricky.

To avoid creating more damage and having to replace the entire faucet when it may not be necessary, it is better to call your nearest Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing in San Antonio, Austin, Temple, or New Braunfels today for assistance!

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