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Leaky Faucet? Here Are The More Common Causes

How much water do you think a leaky faucet wastes? A single drop doesn't seem like much, but according to The USGS Water Science School, single drips add up fast. One drop contains roughly 1/4 milliliter of volume. Based on this volume, 4,000 drips waste one liter of water, and 15,140 drips waste one gallon.

A leaky faucet may not seem like a quick way to run up your water bill, but the math says otherwise. And if you're not convinced, consider this, the United States Environmental Protection Agency states that the average home wastes nearly 10,000 gallons of water—the same amount it takes to fill a swimming pool—in a single year due to leaks.

Common Causes of a Leaky Faucet

Luckily, a leaky faucet usually stems from a fairly common cause. In fact, with a little determination and initiative, you can perform a do-it-yourself fix for almost all of these common causes.

  1. Worn Out Parts: Just like anything else, a faucet is the product of parts. Over time and with use, these parts can wear out and eventually fail. The result? A leak. One of the most common culprits behind a leaky faucet is corroded or worn O-ring. Faucets also have seals and washers that can corrode, tear, or fail. These components need to be replaced to stop the leak.
  2. Lack of Water Pressure: Some leaks are not the fault of the faucet at all. For example, if a drip manifests in an inconsistent manner, the issue may be water pressure. If the pressure is too high, it can cause a backup followed by a leak. Adjusting the water pressure may remedy the problem.
  3. Age & Type: Older faucets have a less than ideal engineering concept and use parts. Newer faucets are created with drip solving ingenuity and do not contain a washer. The result is a faucet that is less prone to leaks. If your current faucet has a traditional washer, you might consider updating to a disc, cartridge, or ball faucet.
  4. Other Users: A common and often unthought-of cause behind a leaky faucet are other users. Kids and even adults can forget to turn a knob off completely. Always check to see if the solution is as simple as ensuring the knob is fully in the off position. If this fixes the issue, it's time for a family meeting!

Don't let a leaky faucet waste gallons of water. Despite being little, drips add up. Tend to a leaky faucet promptly and enlist the services of a plumber if a DIY fix doesn't work. Contact a business, such as Rolling Bay Plumbing, for more information.