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My Faucet Is Leaking: What’s Going On?

My Faucet Is Leaking: What's Going On?Did you know that on average, a household loses 3000 gallons (11,356 liters) per year when a faucet is leaking? Repairing dripping faucets not only saves money, but also helps to preserve perhaps our single most valuable resource.

Homeowners with a minor skill set in home improvement who find that their faucet is leaking should have no trouble repairing or replacing a leaking faucet. For those who do not, hiring a professional is still a cost effective measure when compared to the amount of money they are losing down the drain. Understanding the four basic types of faucets, and how they work, can help make the repair easier.

  • Compression

Most compression faucets begin leaking due to faulty seat washers. The rubber washers, held in place by a brass screw, are attached to the bottom of the faucet stem. To access the washer, pry off the decorative handle cap, remove the handle screw and remove the packing nut securing the assembly to the faucet body. Replace the rubber washer and reassemble the faucet. It is that simple.

  • Cartridge Faucets

Remove the faucet handle as mentioned above to access the faucet cartridge. Pull the cartridge out of the faucet and replace any O-rings, lubricate them with a non-toxic plumber’s grease and reassemble the faucet.

  • Ceramic Disc Faucets

Repairing a ceramic disc faucet requires that you disassemble the faucet handle, remove the escutcheon cap and the cylinder mounting screws located underneath. Remove the cylinder and replace any damaged seals. A slotted screwdriver removes the seals from the cylinder openings easily. Before installing the new seals, clean the cylinder openings thoroughly using a scouring pad and white vinegar. Reassemble the faucet and check for leaks.

  • Ball-type Faucets

Ball-type faucets are more difficult to repair because of the many parts associated with the faucet. Because a leak can develop in several places within the faucet, replacing all of the parts or the entire faucet is recommended.

Homeowners in search of additional expert advice can contact Arpi’s Industries LTD. We have proudly served Calgary for more than 50 years.3

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about faucets and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide. Image courtesy of Shutterstock