How To Fix A Leaky Kitchen Faucet
You don't always need to call a professional to make simple home repairs. Follow these seven easy steps to quickly fix that leaking kitchen faucet.
A leaking tap doesn't necessarily mean that you have to call a professional out. Most people with a good knowledge of DIY would be able to address it themselves, relatively simple process and one that can be quite safe in the way that you do it. You can isolate the water, first off, so you're not running the risk of flooding the place, and you can follow these simple steps to solve the problem of your leaking tap.
The convention from the manufacturer is that any tap will be accessible, the internal workings you can get into, so although it may not be obvious as to how you get into it, it will be possible. The normal route for a tap of this type is for there to be a removable top. In this case, it?s a plastic cap which will expose a screw that holds the whole mechanism together.
You need to remember when you're doing these sorts of jobs have small components like this; if you drop them, they will disappear down the basin, or the sink, so my favourite way of dealing with that is to make sure there's a dust sheet or a tea towel or something, actually within the basin. Remove the screw, put it to one side. This will now allow the actual head of the cap to come off.
This now exposes what we call the headwork, which is basically the moving part, the operating part of the tap. To take this off, you will find that the manufacturer will have given you a nut shape, so we use anything that's made of brass because it?s a soft metal, we would use a flat faced tool on it, so an adjustable spanner rather than a wrench or any tool that's got teeth on it. The spanner will engage, squeeze the teeth until it engages on the brass.
You need to support the tap. Normally, it?s enough to hold it. If you do have to try to put any kind of tool on, you have to be aware that the chrome will scratch, so you'll need to wrap a face flannel or something around there, so that you're not putting the metal in direct contact with the metal.
And that will then come out on the screw thread. As this is removed, it will come out on its thread, and it?s going to expose the washer. The rubber washer is the actual component that seals the water off.
So, normally, when a tap is leaking, it?s because that washer has worn away. It?s either worn away or become damaged. And that damage is causing it not to sit nicely on its seating.
There's a brass ring inside the tap that the washer engages onto, it?s called the seating. When the washer engages, as it pushes down, it forms a waterproof seal. They come in standard sized, normal half inch or three quarter.
So, you remove the old washer, that can now be discarded, replace that with a new one, that goes into what we call the jumper, that section there that holds the washer. So, now we've replaced it with a new washer, that washer now is nice and smooth and flat, and therefore will push down onto the brass seating, giving it a good solid connection. We then re-engage the head work into the body of the tap.
You need to be careful at that time that you don't dislodge the water seal. This particular O ring, this one has an O ring, other fittings have a white or a red washer. You need to make sure that it doesn't get dislodged, drop it down into the body of the tap, and tighten it up, make it finger tight and normally about sort of half a turn, something like that, until you can feel where it makes a reasonable pressure.
Don't over tighten it, the brass components are very important not to over tighten, because it puts too much stress on the thread. If it leaks, you can always turn it off and tighten it up a bit. Tighten that up, and then repeat the process, the wheel goes back on, the retaining screw goes back on, and lastly, put the plastic cap over the top.
And as simple as that, we now have a fully operating tap that we can turn on and off, without dripping. That's how you repair a dripping cap. .