How to fix a leaking tap: a step-by-step guide

You are bound to see a leaking tap in your home from time to time. With regular use, wear and tear is normal, and it’s important to fix a leaking tap sooner rather than later. This is because a leaking tap can actually result in the loss of quite an amount of water.

Since we are in a lockdown, a plumber may not be available to address the issue. Which is why you can learn how to fix a leaking tap easily to repair it yourself. Even under normal circumstances, it can be helpful to know these DIY hacks to such common plumbing problems.

Step 1: Preparation

Before you begin to fix a leaking tap, you’ll need to gather the right tools and perform certain checks. For the most part, you will only require a screwdriver, a drain plug, a wrench, and a small cloth. Some parts may require a replacement, which you can only confirm once you have disassembled the faucet and had a look. However, the first step to learning how to fix a leaking tap is plugging the drain and turning off all the valves for the water supply. This will prevent the water from disrupting the repairs or potentially worsening, and will ensure that no screws or parts fall down the drain as you complete your work.

If you’re unable to find the valve, simply look for the pipe below the sink and follow it until you reach a knob or handle. Turn it clockwise to turn off the water, and test this by turning on the faucet. The water should stop completely, as well as the leak, and any remaining water in the pipes will empty into the sink immediately.

Step 2: Dismantling

This step will differ based on the type of bathroom fixture that is in place. You will have to use a wrench, screwdriver, or spanner to twist the faucet’s handle out of place. Different handles include the standard ball faucets, disk faucets, compression faucets, and cartridge faucets. A compression faucet is the most common type of faucet, with a handle that requires you to press down or lift up to turn the faucet on or off. Sometimes, the handles swivel back and forth to complete this mechanism instead.

Step 3: Repairs

To begin repairing the leaking tap, first, undo the screws on the faucet’s handles. You may have to remove the hot and cold embellishments to find the screws. Once you have removed the handles, place them aside and begin to remove the nut. You can find this sitting on top of the washer seat, which is usually made of rubber. Once the nut has been removed, slowly detach the washer seat which is likely to be attached to a screw below.

One important thing to know before you learn how to stop a leaking tap is that more often than not, the rubber seat is what causes a leak to begin. Because of the rubber material, it begins to wear out after several uses, requiring a replacement. So once you have removed the washer seat, replace it with a new one. You should also ensure that the new piece is the right size and fit so that it sits properly inside the faucet’s mechanism. You may have to remove the worn-out washer by cutting it with a knife. Applying a lubricant such as a grease to the new washer before inserting it can also prove beneficial. This can help seal the new part in its place and allow the faucet to operate more smoothly.

A ball faucet will require you to buy a special replacement kit to replace the parts since they require certain tools, specially made for these kinds of faucets. In case you find yourself unable to purchase one, you can use a regular screwdriver, pliers, and tweezers to get the job done.

Step 4: Reassembling

Once you have mastered how to stop a leaking tap, you must reassemble the faucet by using a screwdriver and wrench to put things back in place. Once this is done, turn the water supply back on and slowly open one of the taps. You should refrain from turning it on abruptly to prevent any damage since all the parts have just been reassembled. There shouldn’t be any more leaks, and the water should run more smoothly than before.

In case your tap continues to leak, you may have to reseat the washer. It is possible that it has been fitted loosely, and upon reassembling all the parts, the tightest fit between the handle and washer was not achieved. Simply redo the steps to get it right.

Whether it’s a leaking shower pipe or leaking faucet, this technique can be used easily with tools that are readily available at home. Check out Jaquar’s range of products for premium bath accessories with a longer lifetime and the best quality.

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