If your faucet is leaking, there’s more going on than just an inconvenience. You’re wasting water and, therefore, wasting money. Plus, a leaky faucet dripping water into the sink makes your home more attractive to pests like bugs or mice. So, how do you fix a leaky faucet? It’s actually quite easy to do yourself if you’re not fond of hiring professionals. Here’s how to get it done.
Find the Source
The first step to fix a leaky faucet is knowing where it’s leaking. You probably already know where the leak is. However, if the water is simply running down the back of the sink, you’ll want to take a closer look. Is it coming from the base of a handle or knob? Is it coming from the base of the faucet? Both require different fixes.
Leaking from Handles
If your faucet handles are leaking, this has to do with one or two things. Your handles either need to be tightened or have their gaskets replaced. The answer may end up being both fixes. Before you start, make sure you turn off the water line under the sink.
If you have knobs, you’ll need to remove the cap at the top of the knob. This cap will usually be a circular piece of plastic with a brand logo on it or the letters L or R. There should be a small opening along the edge just big enough to fit the edge of a flat screwdriver or another rigid object. Pop the cap off and you’ll see a screw underneath. Simply tighten this screw down and then turn on the water. If the knob is still leaking water, you’ll need to remove the screw, remove the knob, and replace the rubber gasket beneath.
The same process can be applied to a handle, but the location of the screw will be on the back of the handle base.
Leaking from Base
If your sink is leaking from the base of the faucet when you’re running water, it’s an issue with the o-ring there. The o-ring is simply a type of rubber gasket that’s meant to create a seal between the faucet and sink. When it’s worn out, it no longer seals, allowing water to escape from the faucet when the water is on.
To replace the o-ring on your faucet, you’ll need to remove the faucet from the sink. Depending on the type of faucet you have, this may be as simple as unscrewing the back of it. Some other sinks may require more complicated maneuvers, such as unscrewing the faucet from beneath the sink. If it’s a difficult case, you’ll want some professional assistance. Once the faucet is removed, simply pull away the old and worn-out o-ring and put the new one in place.
Dripping When Off
If your faucet is dripping while the water isn’t on, there’s a problem with the cartridge or valve. Start by opening up both handles as in the Leaking from Handles section above and tightening their screws. If the handles are slightly loose, it can prevent them from rotating entirely into the off position. This may not fix the problem, however. If not, you may need to check the valve or replace the cartridge in the faucet.
If you need help with any of these repairs, our professionals at POM Group are happy to help. We do these kinds of repairs all the time and can be in and out in no time, leaving you with a functioning sink. Give us a call if you have questions or would like to schedule a visit.