What Causes a Leaky Faucet?

Written on: June 5, 2023

OSI Comfort Specialists handles leak repairs and other plumbing services.

dripping faucet queens, ny When you’re a homeowner, dealing with all the little repairs and malfunctions in your house can feel like a game of whack-a-mole. It’s easy to develop anxiety about some big-ticket issues that crop up: leaking roofs, cracked foundations, failing heating equipment.

But often, the really aggravating home repairs are the persistent minor problems that recur again and again and again. At OSI Comfort Specialists, we help families in Queens, Nassau and western Suffolk counties with a wide range of plumbing services. One of the most common calls that our plumbers get is a problem you’ve undoubtedly experienced at least once: a leaky faucet.

That drip-drip can be pretty annoying, but it also can also indicate a substantial problem with your plumbing or fixtures. Luckily, the OSI Comfort team has the experience and training to identify the issue and fix it quickly.

Here are five typical causes of leaky faucets.

1. Old or damaged disc cartridge valve

If your faucet has two handles, it’s what’s called a cartridge-style faucet. Each handle has a cartridge with a disc that regulates how much hot or cold water passes to the tap. When a cartridge becomes old or damaged, water slips through and creates a drip. We can replace your cartridge relatively quickly.

2. Broken O-ring

The O-ring inside a faucet is located around the valve stem. It’s made of rubber and holds the faucet in place. Over time, an O-ring will become worn out, damaged or loose, which can cause water to leak from your faucet or handles. Fixing an O-ring problem generally requires a professional since it involves removing hardware to position the replacement ring.

3. Problems with a washer

Another frequent cause of a dripping faucet is a loose or damaged washer. Over time, your faucet’s seat washer may become loose. Repeated friction may cause wear on it. Occasionally, when a non-professional installs the faucet, the seat washer may be the wrong size. The good news is that we can generally fix a washer issue easily and fast.

4. Corrosion in your valve seat

The valve seat connects a faucet’s cartridge to the valve that delivers water to the fixture. Sometimes, the valve seat becomes corroded, which leads to a leaky faucet. Older metal valve seats can be resurfaced, but new plastic ones must be replaced. Either way, you should reach out to our team for help.

5. Too much water pressure

Some people don’t do well under extreme pressure. The same is true of faucets when it comes to water pressure. When the water pressure is too high for your faucet, you will see a leak at certain times of the day but not others. You may also only notice a drip when the handles are positioned in a particular way. Our team can assess your water pressure issue and make adjustments to fix the leak.

No matter how small or extensive your plumbing issue is, OSI Comfort Specialists can help. Get in touch with us for a free quote.