Why Won’t My Faucet Stop Dripping?

All kinds of small wear-and-tear can make your faucet drip. The valves could be corroded, the o-ring could be worn down, or the faucet itself could be misaligned. Whatever the underlying issue, a dripping faucet is often an early sign that something’s wrong.

In that way, dripping faucets are actually an opportunity! Figuring out why your faucet is dripping and fixing the problem can help you prevent more significant (and expensive) future problems. The trick is to accurately identify why the drip is happening in the first place. We can help with that:

Why won’t my faucet stop dripping?

Faucets generally start dripping or leaking for one of three reasons. They are:

  1. A corroded valve seat. The valve seat is the connection between your faucet and the spout. It’s located within the compression mechanism. Over time, sediment in your water can get trapped inside your valve seat, which speeds up the seat’s corrosion. When the valve seat corrodes enough, water will flow through damaged sections, creating a leak or drip.
  2. Problems with the O-ring. Rubber o-rings keep screws that hold faucets in place from slipping, ensuring the faucet stays sturdy and doesn’t leak. Over time and with enough use, the rubber o-ring can wear down. If the rubber wears away enough, water could leak past it and start dripping out of the faucet.
  3. There’s something wrong with the washer. There are two common reasons the washer inside your faucet could start leaking. First, it could simply wear out over time. This is actually the most common cause of a dripping faucet. After all, every time you turn on the faucet, you’re essentially pressing the washer against the valve seat. If your faucet drips from the sprout, then your washer is probably worn out.

Unfortunately, it’s very common for faucets to contain washers of the wrong size. When washers aren’t the right size, then water can slip past them and cause leaks. If your faucet is leaking, try taking apart the faucet and making sure your washer is the right size.

What should I do if my faucet won’t stop dripping?

That depends on the reason it’s dripping. If you can identify the part that’s worn out or broken, fixing it should solve the problem. Usually, replacing a worn out faucet component is relatively straightforward. Hardware stores stock valve seats, o-rings, and washers in a wide variety of sizes. Take the damaged component with you so you can compare sizing when you’re finding a replacement.

If you can’t figure out why your faucet is dripping, you have two further options. You could replace the whole faucet. This will give you an opportunity to update its design or even choose a new faucet. Second, you could call a plumber for professional help. Our pros can definitely diagnose exactly what’s wrong and fix it efficiently.

A single drip can add hundreds of unnecessary dollars to your water bill within a single year. If you leave it alone, the drip will get worse and become even more expensive. Worst of all, dripping faucets rarely stay dripping faucets. If you don’t solve the problem now, it could become permanent or expensive damage.

Luckily, fixing a dripping faucet is quick and simple, so the time to act is now! If you can’t figure out why your faucet is dripping or you need help fixing it, get in touch with the experts at Ben Franklin Plumbing.