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Outer Banks Leaking Pipes - Platinum Plumbing

REPAIRING A LEAKY WASHER-TYPE FAUCET

 

Washer-type faucets work with a rubber or composition washer that closes onto a metal washer seat. The washer can become hardened, worn or the seat wears, causing the faucet to leak. You can close the faucet tighter to stop the leaking temporarily, but this increases the internal damage to the faucet.

To repair the leak, first turn off the water. If there's a shutoff valve beneath the fixture, turn off the water at that point. Otherwise, turn it off at the main house shutoff valve in the basement, utility room, or crawlspace. Turn off the hot water supply at the water heater.

 

Ask the Plumber, Plumber Basic

Take the faucet apart by removing the handle (this may not be necessary on some older faucets). Loosen the Phillips-head screw, which usually is beneath a decorative cap in the center of the handle. The cap either unscrews or snaps off when you pry it with a knife blade. If you must use pliers on decorative faucet parts, pad them with electrical tape or cloth to protect the finish. And take special care with the plastic parts found on many modern faucets. Next, lift or pry the handle off its broached stem. Unscrew the packing nut beneath the handle, exposing the rest of the stem. Remove the stem by rotating it in the "on" direction. It will thread out. Reinstall the handle if you have difficulty turning it. Clean chips from the faucet cavity, but do not use harsh abrasives or a file.

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