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How to Fix a Dripping Faucet

How To Fix Dripping Faucets

In typical fashion, it was a Sunday morning when the dripping faucets in our kitchen began dripping relentlessly, bringing with it the unnerving and unending sound of water dripping into a stainless steel sink. The incident served only to remind me that when things go wrong around the home it’s usually at an inopportune time. Being Sunday, the stores in our neighborhood were closed and had the situation warranted it, professional help would have cost a bundle. Fortunately, many repairs like this and others that involve plumbing are simple, straightforward and easy to do yourself if you go about them in a logical fashion.

As in many homes nowadays, our kitchen sink is a washer-less ball faucet with one handle that mixes the hot and cold water supply. Just like other faucets, the first thing to do when making a repair is to turn off the water supply. This is usually done directly under the sink by closing the fixture’s shut-off valve. Then simply open the faucet to drain the pipes. To remove the faucet handle, use a small Allen wrench, a common tool in most tool boxes and costing only a few dollars for an entire set. Once the handle is removed, you’ll see that in most cases, the ball upon which the handle turns is a part of a single cartridge. This can easily be removed, exposing two inlet seals that are set on springs and which control water flow.

With this problem, the solution is simply to remove these seals and springs with needle-nose pliers and replace them with new ones. The faucet is then reassembled. Many irritating plumbing problems are like this. Whether it’s preventing and fixing clogged drains or stopping a run-on toilet, they’re usually simple to fix and inexpensive as well.

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