What Causes a Leaky Faucet?

  Filed under: Plumbing

What Causes a Leaky Faucet

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A leaking faucet can become a major plumbing problem and could cost hundreds of dollars if left unrepaired. A small leak can waste up to three gallons of water a day, and if left for a year, could waste enough water to fill a swimming pool! There are many reasons why your faucet might be leaking, ranging from something insignificant, like a loose part, to something more serious, like cracks in your plumbing. Below, we’re sharing what causes a faucet to drip and how you can fix a leaky faucet.   


Problems with O-Rings

If you notice a steady drip or leak near the handles or base of the spout, it could be a loose or worn O-ring. The O-ring is a small disc attached to the stem screw that holds the handle in place. This piece can become damaged over time from regular use. A simple O-ring replacement will fix this issue. 


Corroded Valve Seat

If your spout is leaking, this can occur from a corroded valve seat. The valve seat connects the faucet and the spout in the compression mechanism. Water sediments can build up and corrode the valve seat, causing a leak. You can avoid this problem by regularly cleaning the valve seat, usually with the help of a professional. 


Worn Out Washer

One of the most common causes of a leaking faucet is a loose or worn-out washer. The washer rests against the valve seat, and because of constant friction between the two parts, it can cause the washer to wear out. A leak can also occur if the washer was installed incorrectly. This type of leak is often found in a compression faucet. 


High Water Pressure

If you only hear drips during a certain time of day, this could be a sign of too high water pressure. These small drips can turn into a bigger problem, leading to pinhole leaks in your piping. Pinhole leaks will only worsen over time. If you suspect your water pressure is the culprit of your leaky faucet, consider contacting a professional. 


Loose or Broken Parts

Your faucet contains several parts, and when one is loose, broken, or corroded, this can cause a leak. Disc cartridge faucets have inlet and outlet seals that can wear out from water sediment. Compression faucets are susceptible to corrosion, and their parts can become worn out from the constant water pressure. 


Cracks in the Plumbing

If you spy a leak underneath the sink, the cause is most likely a pipe crack or a loose fitting. Thoroughly examine your pipes for any small cracks, holes, or loose fittings where they connect. If you suspect something isn’t right, contact a professional plumber who can inspect your plumbing.    


If you’ve been searching for the best professional plumbers near me, stop your search and contact the master plumbers of Fosh Plumbing & Heating Inc! Not only can our experts answer your questions, like what causes a faucet to drip, but they can also guide you through simple fixes, like how to fix a leaky faucet. Whether you need 24/7 emergency service or a drain cleaning, connect with Fosh Plumbing & Heating Inc. today to receive a free estimate.