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How to fix a leaky faucet

A leaky faucet may not be a major plumbing problem so you may be able to make this repair yourself. This of course means you’ll be doing the work. Do you even know how to fix a leaky faucet? Follow these easy steps and your sink will be working like it’s brand new.

Turn off the water

A simple drip can easily turn into a huge mess if the water does not get shut off first. You can find the switch by looking underneath the sink. Once you find the handles for the water supply, turn it counterclockwise to shut off.

Plug the drain

Use a sink plug to do this. If you do not have one, you can use almost anything. The best option will be using a rag to plug the drain. This is necessary because you don’t want any screws or bolts going down the drain.

Type of faucet

How you fix the leak depends of what type of faucet you have. A compression faucet is the easiest to recognize by sight. It will have two screw handles. Every other type of faucet only has one handle. To determine the type of faucet, you may have to take it apart. There are different internal mechanisms in each one. The ball faucet contains a ball bearing. The cartridge faucet often contains a decorative cap. The ceramic-disk faucet contains a ceramic cylinder.

Compression Faucet

In order to fix this type of faucet, you will have to unscrew and remove each handle. The most common reason this type of faucet breaks is when the seat washer wears out. This happens easily because it is made of rubber. It is very simple to replace the seat washer. All you have to do in remove the stem of the faucet, this will expose the O-ring. This is located directly on top of the seat washer. If the handles are leaky as opposed to the faucet, the O-ring will need to be replaced. If it is the faucet that is leaking, simply replace the seat washer then reassemble the faucet. It should work just fine.

Ball Faucet

This type of faucet has several parts that will need replacing in the event of a leak. It also requires special tools for the job. After removing the handle, you’ll have to remove the faucet cam, washer and ball. To fix the leaky faucet, you will have to replace the O-rings and install new springs, valve seats and cam washers. Reassemble the faucet and it should be working properly.

Cartridge Faucet

After removing the handle, you may have to remove the retaining clip as well. Not all cartridge faucets have this piece. Next you will have to pull the cartridge so it stands up straight. Locate the O-rings because these will need replacing. Finally, reassemble the faucet.

Ceramic-disk Faucet

After removing the handle, you need to locate and remove the escutcheon cap. This sits directly under the handle and is usually made of metal. To expose the seals inside, remove the disk cylinder. Pull out each seal and soak in a vinegar solution. Let them soak for a few hours. If some seals look worn out, they may need replacing. Reassemble the faucet, then turn the water on slowly. If the water comes out too fast, it could break the ceramic.

If the problem does not go away after you have followed these steps, or if you don’t even know where to start you will have to seek the help of a professional plumber. Las Vegas plumbing services can be found by calling JMAC Plumbing & Air Conditioning at 702.227.5622.

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