Learn how to fix a dripping tap easily with our tips

Leaking and dripping taps

A nuisance rather than a plumbing disaster, leaking and dripping taps sound annoying, waste water and leave stains in your sink.

 

If you’d like to attempt to fix the problem yourself follow these simple tips below:

 

  • Turn off the water supply

 

Switch off the water supply by turning off the internal stop tap, usually located under the kitchen sink, and if you have a cold water tank, the stopcock.

 

  • Unscrew the nut on the tap

 

Before you start to disconnect any fittings, place the plug in the socket to ensure you can catch anything that falls. Once this is done, firmly hold onto the tap’s spout while you're unscrewing the nut.

 

  • Check the condition of the washer

 

Once you’re removed the valve you can check the condition of the washer. If it looks old and worn, or squashed it’s likely that you’ve found the cause of your leak.

 

  • Replace the washer

 

Available from all DIY stores, simply replace the worn washer with as new one.

 

  • Replace the nuts on the tap

 

Returning your tap to its original condition, ensure you secure the nuts as tightly as possible.

If your tap continues to leak or drip once you’ve replaced the washer it’s likely that the seating has become worn and will need to be replaced.

If you notice that the leak is originating from around the tap spindle or that the tap is vibrating whenever it’s turned on, you may need to replace the gland packing or the O-ring seals in the tap.

If you have older brass taps, they may develop cavities and become porous due to age. In this case the taps will need to be replaced.

Information and other materials on this website are not intended to constitute professional advice and should not be relied upon. Please see our Terms of Use for further details.

Related articles


How does an electric boiler work

Electric boilers

A common replacement for small to medium sized boilers, electric boilers are known to be light, silent and compact. Economical to run in comparison to...
What is a combi boiler explained

Combi boilers

Combi boilers (combination boilers), are the most popular type of boiler in the UK. Providing heat and hot water on demand, without the need for a...
Tips on identifying a leak

Identifying and fixing a leak

A common problem in the colder months, when pipes freeze and expand it’s sometimes challenging to find the exact origin of a leak and repair it...