It’s right up there next to nails on a chalkboard: the sound of a leaky faucet. Something has to be done for the sake of your sanity (and water bill), but how do you know whether it’s time to repair or replace? Check out this guide on when to fix it and when to throw in the towel.
Fortunately, most faucets are constructed with the same simple mechanisms. Because of this, it’s fairly easy to identify whether your faucet is salvageable or not. Here are a few easy fixes for a leaky faucet. Remember to turn off your water before attempting a repair.
Worn Out Parts
Over time the seals, O-rings, and valve seat in your faucet can become worn out. These are usually fairly inexpensive parts and can be found at your local hardware store. Disassemble your faucet, and replace any worn out parts. Remember to draw yourself a diagram or snap photos to ensure you return the parts in the correct order.
Another common cause of leaky faucets is mineral buildup. You can address this issue by thoroughly cleaning your faucet and all of its parts with white vinegar and a scouring pad.
Over time, the interworkings of your faucet can become loose and allow water to leak out. Once you’ve cleaned and replaced all necessary parts, reassemble your faucet. Be careful to tighten each part to prevent future leaks.
Sometimes, your faucet is just beyond repair. In the following cases, it's probably time to simply replace your faucet. Remember, you can always enlist a professional plumber if you're not sure how to proceed.
If your faucet has sprung a leak in more than one place, it’s probably best to replace it. You may be able to address the current leaks, but chances are, your faucet is on its last leg and will need to be replaced soon, anyway.
Over time, your faucet’s parts may become extensively corroded. If disassemble the faucet and find this to be the case, simply replace it. Salvaging the faucet now will only mean facing another leak in the near future.
A broken handle or cracked spout can be patched, but it won’t last long against the daily wear and tear a faucet faces. If the faucet itself is damaged, you’ll want to replace it sooner rather than later.
Unidentifiable Leak Source
If you can’t identify where the leak is coming from and you’ve tried all of the suggestions above, it may be time to switch out the faucet. It’s safe to assume that the time, energy, and money invested in trying to fix it would be costlier than a replacement.
If you need a reliable plumber in the Roaring Fork Valley area, contact Pacific Sheet Metal. The professionals at RFV Plumbing & Electrical can handle all of your plumbing needs, from minor repairs to major replacements. If it has to do with plumbing, we can fix it!