Why Are My Faucets Leaking?

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Old Dripping Kitchen Faucet Close Up. Macro.

It’s something you might not notice right away unless the room is entirely quiet—a faint drip, drip, drip. You tighten the knob as much as you can to stop the water from flowing through, but to no avail. Sometimes, when you tighten the handle, it actually gets worse! What if the leak isn’t even coming out of the spout of the faucet, but the base? There’s no knob for that!

Why It’s An Issue

A little drip from a faucet doesn’t seem like that big of a deal, but it can really add up. First, every drop is costing you money! It might not be a particularly high cost per drop, but over time, you can rack up quite a bill. That’s even if the leak doesn’t get worse. If you’re leaking hot water, that just compounds the costs! If not addressed, your pipes, fixtures, and home around the leak can be seriously damaged.

A Common Condition

A leaky faucet is one of the most common issues that can arise in a bathroom or kitchen sink. The cause can depend on the kind of faucet you have, the hardness of the water in your pipes, and even the pressure of the water coming into your home. Understanding the causes can point you in the right direction for a permanent fix.

Too Loose

Over the years your faucet is used, it’s reasonable for things to loosen up. When this happens, the tight seals may allow water to escape. If water is coming out from where the faucet attaches to the counter or the sink, it may be that the internal connections have gotten slightly unscrewed with years of use. A loose connection with the supply line can let water leak out.

When the leak is coming from the spout or around the knobs, check the handles. It may be that they’ve loosened up to the point where they aren’t actually turning the internal mechanisms the way they should be. Once you check that everything is tight, see if you still have errant water leaking out.

Worn Out

Parts wear out over time. On a fixture such as a faucet that sees repeated use all day, moving parts are seeing more wear and tear than something that sits unused most of the time. Eventually, parts that are specifically designed to keep water from leaking out like washers and o-rings break down and start to let moisture through. This leads to the annoying drips you hear when you get a quiet moment in your home.

Too Tight

One cause of a leak might be that you’re actually tightening your handles and knobs too much. The rubber rings and washers used in your faucet get compressed when you turn the knobs. Putting too much pressure on them can actually lead to more damage and worsen your leak. If you find yourself grunting with effort to crank down on your faucet handle, you may have already done the damage, and it’s time to replace those rubber bits.

Under Pressure

High water pressure can also be the cause of your leaky faucet problem. If you find yourself getting sprayed when you turn on your sink, it’s possible that water is constantly pushing to escape! Take note of how often you have to replace parts of your faucet. If it’s more often than you think is reasonable, take a look at your water pressure.

If the psi on your gauge is too much over 80, you’ll need to reduce it to ensure you don’t continue damaging your faucets and pipes. This is a little more than your average DIY job, so talking to trained professionals is a great way to avoid a big wet mess.

Professional Installation

When installing your faucets, you want to make sure everything is done right. Having a trained professional handle the replacement and repairs guarantees that you’re minimizing the chance that something could go wrong. If you’re looking at a bathroom or kitchen remodel, or just wanting a fresh faucet installed right the first time, don’t take a chance. Give the trained professionals at The Plumbing Works a call!