How to Fix a Leaky Faucet

Do you have a faucet that has been leaking for months? Do you lie awake at night listening to it drip? Well, it’s time for you to fix it. It’s wasting water – hundreds of gallons a month, in fact. All that wasted water costs you money. Leaving it to continue to drip can lead to bigger problems, too. So get ready to fix it. It’s not that difficult, and you can do it yourself by following these simple steps.

1. First, gather your supplies. You’ll need a C wrench or an adjustable wrench, a screwdriver (Phillips and/or flat head), some WD-40, and replacement washers and O-rings.

2. Before you do anything else, turn off the water supply. You can find the water supply valve by looking underneath the sinks; you’ll see the knobs on the pipes there.

3. Remove any decorative components from the faucet handles. You can pry them off with a flat head screwdriver. Under those decorative covers, you’ll see a screw that attaches the handle to the base. Unscrew it, and remove the handle. You can pry it off with your flat head screwdriver. If it’s too tight, try loosening it up with a little WD-40.

4. Next, get your wrench out. Use it to loosen the packing nut. Now you should see the stem; take that off, too. The stem may pop right off, or it may need to be twisted loose from the valve. After you take these parts off, check them to see if they are damaged and need to be replaced.

5. Look inside the valve seat. Find the washer and O-ring. When a faucet is leaky, usually the washer and/or O-ring is to blame. It’s important to make sure that the replacement part is exactly the right fit. You can take the old washer and O-ring in to the hardware store to help you find an exact match. Once you have the right part, replace the washer and O-ring with the new parts.

6. Now you just have to reassemble. Replace the stem, the packing nut, the screw, and the handle. Once it’s all put back together, turn the faucet on and see if the leak is gone.

7. If the faucet is still leaking, you may have corrosion in your valve seat. If the valve seat isn’t cleaned, over time it can develop leaks near the spout. Other potential culprits include worn seals, loose parts, or broken plumbing. If you can’t seem to find the problem or run into issues during your repairs, call a professional plumber for assistance.

Fixing a leaky faucet is usually a simple process that you can do on your own. It’s often as easy as replacing a washer or O-ring; these parts only cost a few dollars. Taking the time to make this repair will prevent bigger problems in the future and keep you from wasting a ton of water. Those little drips add up over time, and can send hundreds of gallons of water down the drain. If you have a leaky faucet that needs to be fixed, you can always call Scott English Plumbing. We handle all kinds of routine plumbing repairs, like leaky faucets. We are also on call 24/7 for plumbing emergencies, like broken pipes. If you have any kind of plumbing issue that needs attention, just call Scott English Plumbing. We will come out to your home right away to assess the problem and correct it quickly.