Quick Fixes for Faucet Problems

So your kitchen or bathroom faucet is acting weird. A leaky faucet is pretty easy to diagnose and repair, but there are other faucet problems that aren’t so straightforward. Maybe your faucet is making strange noises. Maybe it is spraying, or the water flow isn’t consistent. If you need help figuring out what is wrong with your faucet and what you should do about it, check out these quick fixes for faucet problems.

Screeching Faucet

A freshly repaired faucet.Problem: The faucet makes a terrible screeching sound every time you turn on the water.

Solution: The rubber washer (also referred to as a rubber seal) inside the faucet needs to be replaced. Faucets contain a small rubber piece called a washer. Over time, that little rubber piece hardens. When the rubber gets harder and the water passes over the washer, it makes that screeching noise that you are hearing. This is an easy fix. You don’t need to replace the entire faucet; just replace the washer. That little rubber piece is inexpensive and easy to change out. Most times, you can find replacement kits at your local hardware store.

Clanking Faucet

Problem: The faucet makes a clanking noise.

The symptom is that when you turn on the faucet you usually hear a clanking or similar mechanical sound. This problem is normally associated with problems with your plumbing pipes unless the sound can be distinctly isolated to the faucet. In this case, the most common culprit is that there is a cracked component of the faucet causing the clanking sound.

Solution: The important thing here is to find out whether the clanking noise is coming from the faucet itself or from the plumbing pipes. Listen closely. If you think that the sound is coming from the faucet, then you should take the faucet apart and check for cracks or damage in any of the components. If it seems to be ok, then reassemble and make sure everything is tightened securely. Call a plumber to investigate the problem further.

Squeaking Handle

Washing hands in a working sink.Problem: The faucet squeaks when you turn the handle.

You open the faucet by turning the handle, but you hear a squeaking sound every time you do so. Are you familiar with this situation? A squeaky faucet handle indicates that the threads on the stem of the faucet have become worn. Does this mean you need to swap out the entire faucet? Not really.

Solution: To get rid of the squeaks, just remove the handle and coat the threads with petroleum jelly or plumber’s grease. Put it all back together, and the squeaking should be gone.

Restricted Flow

Problem: Water is spitting out of the faucet instead of streaming out.

Solution:  This is one of the most common problems that can happen even with the most expensive faucets in the market. Every home at one time or another has experienced inconsistent stream of water due to restricted flow. In many instances the restriction does not happen within the water line but in the faucet itself; at the point of the aerators in particular.

If the water comes spluttering out of the faucet, you probably have a clogged aerator. The aerator is a little screen that goes over the end of the faucet. Just unscrew the aerator from the faucet, and rinse it in vinegar to get rid of the mineral deposits or lime that accumulated on its surface. Put it back on the faucet, and your water should now be running smoothly.

Dribbling Sink Hose

Problem: The sprayer on the kitchen sink dribbles instead of spraying.

Solution: The problem is likely the diverter. The diverter is a little valve located inside the faucet stem. You’ll need to take it apart and remove the diverter with a small screwdriver. Clean the diverter with vinegar to get rid of any deposits that are clogging it up, and soak the diverter in a bath of equal parts boiling water and white vinegar if it’s especially dirty. Put it back together, and your sprayer should be dribbling no more.

Dripping Faucet

Problem: The bathroom faucet is leaking, but you don’t have time to fix it right now. The dripping sound is about to send you to the looney bin.

Solution: Here’s an easy fix for you. It won’t repair the problem, but it’ll help you keep your sanity until you can tackle the project. Just tie a long piece of string around the faucet. As the water drips out of the faucet, it will run down the string. It’ll still drip, but it won’t make any noise as it drips. This should help get you by until you have time to replace the washer in the faucet.

Leaking Faucet

Scott English working on a broken sink.Problem: The faucet is leaking continuously and needs to be fixed before it raises your water bill and causes damage.

Solution: A leaky faucet means that there is seepage coming from the water supply. In order to prevent the water from coming out of the faucet when the faucet is turned off, there must be a watertight seal. If there is a problem with either the faucet seal or the washer, water can leak out of the faucet. To fix a leaky faucet, turn off your water supply and dissassemble your faucet, if you’re able. Then check the washer and replace it if damaged. If you’re not comfortable with this DIY repair, or you’ve tried it without results, call Scott English for quick repair service!

Keep in mind that plumbing problems are something to take seriously. If you have a plumbing problem, call Scott English Plumbing. We have been taking care of homeowners in Orange County for years, and we are here for you 24/7. Call Scott English Plumbing to schedule a service call today.