Tips and Tricks, Plumbing Insights, Water Insights

leaky faucet

How to Fix a Dripping Faucet

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t think about your faucet until it starts dripping. A dripping faucet can be more than just a nuisance; it can also waste water and money. In this blog post, we’ll show you how to fix a dripping faucet in a few simple steps. Keep reading to learn more!

Shut off the water supply to the faucet. 

This is usually located under the sink. Once the water is shut off, you can assess the problem and decide whether you need to replace a washer or another part.

Remove the faucet handle by unscrewing it from the valve stem.

Start by unscrewing any caps or screws that are holding it in place. Once the handle is exposed, you should be able to see a small setscrew near the base. Use an Allen wrench or a screwdriver to loosen this setscrew and remove it. With the setscrew removed, the handle should pull off easily exposing the valve stem. If there is a nut holding the valve stem in place, use a wrench to loosen it and remove the valve stem. Once the valve stem is removed, you will be able to see the inner workings of the faucet. Depending on the type of faucet, you may need to remove additional parts before being able to access the valves. Consult your owner’s manual for specific instructions.

Clean any gunk or mineral deposits from around the valve stem with a toothbrush.

Over time, it’s not uncommon for a valve stem to become covered in grime or mineral deposits. This can make it difficult to turn the valve on or off, and may even cause it to leak. If you’re having trouble with your valve stem, start by giving it a good cleaning. First, use a toothbrush to remove any gunk that’s built up around the stem. Next, soak a cotton swab in vinegar and use it to wipe away any mineral deposits. Once you’re finished, give the stem a final rinse with water. With just a little bit of effort, you should be able to clean your valve stem and get it working like new again.  If there appears to be no debris within the faucet stem, the part itself might need to be replaced with a new assembly from the same manufacturer.

Apply plumber’s tape around the threads of the valve stem.

Plumber’s tape is a thin, rubberized tape that helps to create a watertight seal. It is easy to apply and can be found at most hardware stores. To use, simply wrap the tape around the threads in a clockwise direction. Make sure that the tape is snug against the threads and that there are no gaps or overlapping sections. Once the tape is in place, screw on the valve handle or cap. The plumber’s tape will help to create a tight seal, preventing water from leaking through the threads.

Reattach the faucet handle and turn on the water supply.

Be sure to snug up the screw so that the handle is tight but can still be turned with ease. 

Test to see if the faucet is still leaking – if it is, repeat steps 3-5 until it’s fixed or replace the entire stem/cartridge itself.

If you find that you are unable to fix the problem or if it persists, please do not hesitate to contact Hedlund Plumbing for assistance. We would be more than happy to help you solve your plumbing problems!

(800) 433-5863

About Hedlund Plumbing

The solution to all your plumbing repair, installation, and maintenance needs. Our local Lansing plumbers are fully licensed and insured professionals. We arrive on time in a marked van ready to go with the tools and materials to complete the job. Our commitment to our customers is why we are considered by many to be the top Lansing plumber.

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