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How to stop a leaking tap

Learn how to fix leaking taps to save yourself some hard-earned cash otherwise spent on a plumber.


By Cleanipedia Team

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No one enjoys the sounds of water tapping against the sink when you have a slow-dripping leaking tap. It is guaranteed to cause frustration and likely to keep sleep at bay. Here we will share a simple guide for you to fix leaking taps, and help you get some well-earned, uninterrupted rest at night.

Once you know how to change a leaking tap, lay any parts you remove during the process to one side in order, so you can put it back together in order.

3 things to remember when fixing a leaking tap

There are a few things you need to remember before you start fixing a leaking tap yourself:

  • Run the tap to ensure you have no water left in the pipes.

  • Put the plug in to ensure no small parts accidentally end up falling down the pipes.

  • Always turn the water supply to the tap off before starting to fix it.

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How to stop a leaking tap

When you’ve asked the question “how do you fix a leaking tap?” this simple guide will help you get that dripping, leaking tap under control.

  1. Whichever part of the tap is causing the leak; most will need you to remove the tap head. In order to do this, you need to unscrew the handle screw which is usually hidden under a cap on the handle. There are a few ways the cap may need to be removed:

    • Some can simply be lifted off using your fingers.

    • Some may need a flat-head screwdriver to gently ease the cap off.

    • For single lever taps, you may need to remove the hot and cold indicator.

  2. How to change a ceramic disc valve. Once the handle screw is removed and the top of the valve is revealed, remove the valve cover by gripping and turning the valve with an adjustable spanner. Once this is unscrewed, you can simply remove the ceramic disc valve and reassemble the tap.

  3. How to change a leaking tap washer. Remove the ceramic disc valve as above, then unscrew or flip off the washer in order to replace it.

  4. How to change a spout o-ring. Remove the grub screw which is located behind the spout, twisting it to release it. Once the spout has been removed, you can access the o-ring at the base. If the o-ring is badly worn, you may need to prise it off with a screwdriver or cut it out in order to replace it. Then all you need to do is roll on the replacement to renew the seal.

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Now you have an easy-to-follow guide for how to fix leaking taps yourself, you can be sure to get that irritating tapping of a leaking tap under control quickly!    

  • Locate which part of your tap is causing the drip before fixing.

  • Always turn the water supply off before fixing the tap.

  • Run the tap to ensure you have no water left in the pipes so you don’t cause a flood.

Originally published