How to fix a leaky faucet so it doesn’t ruin your bathroom or kitchen

When drips start falling from your faucet, it’s not just the plumbing you have to worry about. Your countertops, walls, floor and cabinetry are all vulnerable to water damage, and moist spaces gather mold quickly. Calling a plumber can be inconvenient and costly, but it’s especially risky because you have to wait while the damage gets worse. Make sure your surfaces and water bill are protected by learning how to stem the flow. If you notice a leak, follow these steps to fix your faucet.

Step 1: Gather your tools

You’ll need a wrench, towel, screwdriver, and a washer that’s identical to the one currently holding your faucet together.

Step 2: Turn off the water

If there’s a water valve connected to the sink or tub, turn it off. You may have to switch off the whole water main.

Step 3: Remove the handle and cap 

If there’s a decorative cap or top, twist or pry it off while using the towel to protect the finish. Then unscrew the handle itself, and use the wrench to pry off the cap.

Step 4: Tighten the packing nut

There should be a packing nut at the base of the handle’s stem. Tighten it with the wrench and towel. If the leak remains, move onto the next step.

Step 5: Unscrew the packing nut and remove the whole stem 

Follow manufacturer instructions to remove the stem that connects the faucet to its water supply.

Step 6: Replace the washer

Unscrew the washer at the bottom of the stem, remove it, and replace it with a new washer that’s exactly the same size and shape. If there’s no washer, wrap the nut with a piece of string to secure it tighter.

Step 7: Reassemble and turn the water back on

Put the faucet stem, handle and caps back on, then switch on the water supply. Water should flow through your faucet without any leaks, but if it doesn’t, it may be time to call a professional.

Of course, the best way to prevent water damage and waste is to make sure your surfaces and pipes are properly installed and sealed in the first place. At NuStone Transformations, we only use the most durable materials and high-grade sealants and adhesives in our refaced bathrooms and kitchens. Don’t settle for the results of a sloppy job, or risk any skipped steps in your next remodeling project. Contact us today to schedule a complimentary in-home consultation, and we’ll give you a quote with no strings attached.

 

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