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According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, a leaky faucet that drips just on time per second could waste as much as 27,000 gallons of water every year. That number might seem a bit surprising, but it should emphasize the fact that learning how to fix a plumbing problem, no matter how small, is smart for every homeowner who wants to reduce water usage and save money on utility bills. Sometimes, finding out how to fix plumbing issues like a leaky faucet is pretty easy, and all you will need is a few simple steps.
- Turn Off the Water
Before ever picking up a screwdriver, wrench, or any other tool, make sure that the water supply to the leaking fixture is turned off so that you don’t make a big mess. Curly made that mistake in an episode of The Three Stooges and disaster struck. You can avoid that problem by simply making sure the water supply is cut off.
- Take off Decorative Parts
Some faucets could have additions that are in place solely for an improved aesthetic, rather than for functionality. By taking them off, you will make it easier to get at the parts you need to work on. After doing that, you will be able to simply unscrew the handle from the stem.
- Remove the Packing Nut
This step might require a little elbow grease, but with your wrench, you will want to remove the packing nut. Then, you will be able to remove the faucet stem as well. How to do that will vary depending on the specific faucet, and some will just pop right off. But when you get the nut and stem removed, check for damage since they could be the source of the leak.
- Inspect the O-Ring and Washer
If you haven’t found the source of the leak yet, then there’s a good chance that the O-ring or washer is worn down and preventing a tight seal. If that is the case, then you will need to find replacements that are an exact fit. Without a perfect match, the leak will continue.
This step might seem painfully obvious, but it is an important part of how to fix a plumbing problem. And, you might be surprised how much more difficult it is to put a faucet back together than it is to take it apart.
Though it can be easy to fix a small leak or other common plumbing problems, sometimes, you will simply need to hire professionals. Experienced plumbers will know how to fix a plumbing problem of almost every variety. Whether you have a leaky faucet or toilet plumbing problems that are rather disgusting, hiring an expert is often the best way to make sure the proper repairs are made.