A leaky faucet is not only annoying, but it also causes your water bills to rise. Imagine the agony you will go through when it is not fixed on time. At some point, you will lose sleep over the sound of incessant dripping. As if that is not enough, your kids may take advantage of the situation to make a mess thanks to the dripping water.
The first thought that comes into your mind when you have a leaking bathroom faucet is to call a plumber to fix the problem. However, you may not have the money to pay for the services. Also, they may take too long to help you with your problem, especially if it happens at night. The good news is, you can fix a leaky faucet for bathroom and sink on your own if you follow these steps. But first, gather all the right tools and supplies for your project.
What you will need
Repairing a faucet for sinks or bathrooms is a project that can be simplified by gathering the right tools and supplies. You will need the following:
- Allen wrenches
- Flathead screwdriver
- White vinegar
- Adjustable wrench
- Scouring pad
- Spray oil for lubrication
- Washers and seals
Turn off the water
Before you start the faucet repair, turn off the water from the main supply. The last thing you want is to experience an instant flood as soon as you disassemble it. Once you have turned it off, find the fixture shutoff valves below the sink if it has any. Turn on the faucet to verify whether the water has been shut off. If there is no water coming out of it, you can cover the drain using a stopper or a cloth.
Take out the faucet handles
Faucet handles come in different brands, sizes, and shapes. If yours is a standard bathroom sink faucet, a flathead screwdriver can be used to remove the cosmetic caps on top of the handle. This will help you to locate the real handle screws. For single-handle faucets, unscrew the setscrew set. In some instances, the screws may refuse to come off as a result of corrosion. Using spray oil helps to lubricate and loosen the parts.
Take out the valve stem or cartridge
Once you have removed the handle, you will see the inner valve system. Separate this part from the body of the faucet. The style of the faucet and shape of the parts will determine the method for extraction. Some have a brass valve stem that detaches it from the valve body while others use a plastic or brass cartridge. Whatever the case, always refer to the instructions manual for guidance.
Scrutinize the removed parts
Faucets styles vary. Some are made from typical rubber, rubber O-rings, or ring-shaped rubber seals. Scrutinizing these parts will help you decide whether to replace or repair the worn-out parts.
Replace damaged parts
Damaged or worn-out parts are perfect recipes of leaky disasters. If they aren't replaced in good time, you will still face the same problem in the future. Once you have identified what needs replacement, you can do the sourcing from suppliers. If you aren't sure about what you are doing, you can take the worn-out parts to the hardware store and request the precise duplicates.
Clean the valves
Dirt is one of the leading causes of faucet leaks. Once you have made the replacements, you can soak the valve seat in white vinegar for an hour. Use a scouring pad to clean the surfaces so that they come out looking shiny and smooth. After, take out the stopper from the drain to sprinkle clean water over the valves.
Put the parts back together
Once you have cleaned the parts, it is time to reassemble them in a reverse manner. Ensure all the parts are tightly fixed to prevent any spillage. Now you can turn on the water supply while inspecting it for any leaks. If it doesn't, pat yourself on the back.
Not everyone was born to be a plumber. The complexity of fixing a leaky faucet for bathtubs, sinks and even taps may compel you to seek the assistance of a plumber. But what happens when you stay in a remote area or don't have the money to pay for the service? Obviously, you will need to do it on your own. Remember, the seven DIY steps will temporarily fix the problem. But you will still need an expert to repair, replace, or maintain these parts.