How To Repair A Faucet
If water drips or leaks from the faucet, it can lead to a shocking water bill. A faucet tap that is difficult to open or turn can be submitted to repairs or some tough cleaning may suffice. However, if all else fails, then a tap replacement would be in order. Most faucet repairs are usually related to mineral deposit build-up or a loose washer and they are easy to accomplish. Here is how you can disassemble the faucet and start with simple repairs.
- Shut off the water supply
Shut off the water supply and then disassemble the faucet. Unscrew a small screw that may be on the top of back of the handle and separate the faucet handle from its cylindrical body. If the faucet is new or lime scale has accumulated, the plug will probably be harder to open. To remove it, you can start using the same techniques of maintaining your faucet to keep it shiny, to clean off the hard, scaly deposits. Otherwise, feel free to use some WD40 grease to help free it.
- Remove the packing nut
Once the faucet handle is removed, the next layer is the packing nut which has to be removed with a pair slip-joint pliers or adjustable wrench. Twist it out carefully like you would when you are turning on a faucet sideways. Be careful not to scratch the metal as it may lead to further problems down the line.
- Remove and replace the washer
After removing the packing nut, you would be looking at the washer. This washer also has another screw attached to it, but this can be unscrewed by hand. Look at this screw and see if there has been any damage or erosion to it. If it does, then it’s most likely the culprit of why your tap was facing issues. Getting a replacement washer that is the exact fit for the tap brand is the most ideal, or else you will continue to face a washer problem down the line.
Reassemble the whole tap again in the reverse order from how you disassembled it the first time round. Switch back on the water supply and check for any more leaks.
MINERAL DEPOSIT OR LIME SCALE
Go through the disassembly steps as highlighted above.
When you remove the cap, you need to unscrew the screw in order to remove the tap opener. Depending on the model, the screw will need to be unscrewed with a smaller cross screwdriver or Allen wrench.
After unscrewing the screw, move the opener up and down and left and right. Then the ring/ rosette must be unscrewed. First, try to unscrew it by hand, you can also wrap it with a cloth to give it a firmer grip. If you cannot unscrew it with your hand, wrap it with a cloth and then gently unscrew it with tongs. After removing the rosette, unscrew the main ring with pliers or a key of the right size. Now simply remove the cartridge. You will probably immediately notice on the top the deposits of limescale that caused the problem.
Check the erasers on the bottom of the cartridge. If the cartridge does not “sit” well on the inside of the tap, it is the cause of the leak and the cartridge will need to be replaced. If the faucet just turns and opens it hard, it will probably be enough to clean it. Clean the visible parts of the tartar completely, then spray the cartridge well with the tartar agent and immerse it in the tartar filled with tartar or vinegar. After a while, work out the cartridge by moving the moving part in all directions. Then let it stand in the descaling solution for a while. We do not recommend disassembling the cartridge as it may be difficult to assemble. If it is in poor condition, you can try to save it by opening and cleaning it internally.
When you have cleaned or replaced the cartridge, replace all parts with the reverse procedure. When rotating the main ring, be careful not to tighten it too much, the cartridge is plastic, and tightening the ring may damage it. When you have put everything back in place, open both corner valves.
If the faucet is still leaking after repair, or you have not been able to properly clean the scale which was accumulated inside the cartridge, you will need to replace it with a new one. You must buy a cartridge of the same diameter, and the holes in the cartridge must properly fit into the holes inside the tap. We recommend that you bring your old cartridge and show it to the dealer. Also, you can find a professional faucet contractor to give you advice as well.
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