A dripping tap can be a constant annoyance, but with a few simple steps you can often fix it yourself. Before you start work, turn off the water supply to your basin, bath or sink. If there’s no obvious valve then search for a screw on the pipe where it enters the wall. Loosen this and open the taps to drain away all the water.
Check for leaks
If you have a leaking tap, then first check for leaks around the base of the tap itself. Use a piece of masking tape or Blu-Tack to mark the area where water collects, then leave it overnight and see if any new marks appear in the morning. If there’s a leak here, tighten or replace washers as necessary using an adjustable spanner.
Check valves and seals
If there’s no water collecting on your floor, then check for leaks around any valves that control flow rates. These are usually found underneath sinks where pipes meet them at 90 degrees. Use pliers or adjustable pliers to tighten any nuts or screws that hold these together – don’t over-tighten them though! You should also check for worn seals around plumbing joints which may need replacing too – just squeeze them gently with your fingers.
- Turn off the water supply to the tap. This is usually located under the sink.
- Drain any remaining water from the tap. You can do this by turning on the tap and letting the water run until it stops.
- Remove the tap handle. There will usually be a screw or nut that holds the handle in place.
- Remove the tap washer. This is a small rubber ring that sits between the tap and the spout.
- Inspect the tap washer. If it is damaged or worn, replace it with a new one.
- Put the new tap washer in place. Make sure it is seated properly.
- Replace the tap handle.
- Turn on the water supply and test the tap. The tap should no longer be dripping.
Here are some additional tips for fixing a dripping tap:
- Use the correct size tap washer. The washer should be a tight fit, but not so tight that it is difficult to turn the tap.
- If the tap washer is not the problem, the next likely cause is a worn or damaged O-ring. The O-ring is a small rubber ring that seals the valve. If it is damaged, it will allow water to leak past the valve.
- If you are not comfortable fixing the tap yourself, you can always call a plumber.
Here is a temporary fix for a dripping tap:
- Tie a string around the faucet, making sure the string goes around the aerator or over the faucet spout.
- Tighten the string until the dripping stops.
This is just a temporary fix, and you will need to replace the tap washer or O-ring as soon as possible.
What causes a dripping tap?
A dripping tap is caused by a variety of factors, including a worn-out washer, a faulty valve, or a loose connection. The most common cause of a dripping tap is a worn-out washer. Washers are small rubber discs that are placed between the tap and the valve seat. Over time, these washers can become worn out and no longer provide a tight seal, resulting in a dripping tap.
Faulty valves can also cause a dripping tap. Valves are responsible for controlling the flow of water through the tap. If the valve is not working properly, it can cause water to leak out of the tap. Finally, a loose connection can also cause a dripping tap. If the connection between the tap and the water supply is not secure, it can cause water to leak out of the tap.
In order to fix a dripping tap, it is important to identify the cause of the problem and take the appropriate steps to repair it. If the cause is a worn-out washer, it can be replaced with a new one. If the cause is a faulty valve, it should be replaced. If the cause is a loose connection, it should be tightened.
There are several causes of a dripping tap. The most common causes are:
- Damaged or worn tap washer. The tap washer is a small rubber ring that sits between the tap and the spout. It helps to seal the tap and prevent leaks. If the tap washer is damaged or worn, it will allow water to leak past the tap.
- Damaged or worn O-ring. The O-ring is a small rubber ring that seals the valve in the tap. If the O-ring is damaged or worn, it will allow water to leak past the valve.
- Loose or damaged faucet handle. The faucet handle is what you turn to control the flow of water. If the handle is loose or damaged, it can cause the tap to drip.
- High water pressure. If the water pressure in your home is too high, it can put extra stress on the tap and cause it to leak.
- A buildup of limescale or other deposits. Over time, limescale and other deposits can build up on the tap and its parts. This can cause the tap to malfunction and leak.
If you have a dripping tap, it is important to fix it as soon as possible. A dripping tap can waste a lot of water, and it can also damage your fixtures. You can fix a dripping tap yourself, or you can call a plumber.
Here are some tips to prevent a dripping tap:
- Install aerators on your faucets. Aerators are small devices that mix air with water, which helps to reduce water flow and pressure.
- Clean your faucets regularly. This will help to remove limescale and other deposits that can build up and cause leaks.
- Have your faucets inspected and repaired by a plumber every few years. This will help to catch any problems early on and prevent leaks.