photo credit: Bah Humbug
How to fix a dripping bathtub faucet, but you don’t need to call a plumber and spend money on a service call. The following insider tips on plumbing repairs will soon make you a DIY expert. If you ever need to fix a leaky shower faucet then this article is just what you need to get the job done.
The first thing you need to do is turn off the water supply to the sink. The most common place to find the valve that shuts off the water supply is directly below the faucet.
If the valve resists being turned, put a drop or two of oil right where the stem disappears into the large nut. Then use a wrench to loosen the nut one complete turn, and tighten it back up by hand. Wait for a couple of minutes and then you should be able to turn the valve off.
The next step is to take out the stem from the body. You can then remove the small nut by turning in a counter clockwise direction. Grasp the handle and turn it counterclockwise, as if you were turning on the water. At this stage you should be able to pull out the inner workings of the faucet.
You will need to remove a setscrew near the bottom of the handle if you are working on a ball-type fitting. There will be a plastic ring or cap which you just unscrew and remove before pulling out the ball assembly.
You are almost finished, just need to replace the washer, which should still be attached the ball assembly you just pulled out. There’s a screw holding it on so remove that, replace it with the new washer, tighten the screw back on and be sure not to go too tight where the washer starts to become damaged.
To reassemble the faucet, simply repeat the previous steps in reverse order. Remember to tighten the larger of the nuts. Lastly, reconnect the water supply and you should be all set to go.
If you are unlucky and the leak persists, you will most likely have to replace the entire unit. Most manufacturers have available kits for repairs and you can find them at most reputable diy stores. On some occasions you may not be able to get a replacement part made by the original manufacturer. In that case look for a generic spare part from any well known vendor.
The worst thing that can happen is to commence the repair and then discover that there are no replacement parts available. So it’s always a good idea to check first!