Why Should I Hire A Professional?
You may be thinking of tackling a leaky faucet yourself. While simple repairs such as an O-ring replacement can be completed by the average Do-It-Yourselfer, in many instances, repairing a faucet can quickly become overwhelming. There are myriad small parts inside of a faucet that are vital to the mechanism’s performance, and keeping track of them all and where they go is difficult. Unless you have considerable plumbing experience, it’s advisable to hire a professional for anything but the most basic repairs.
There are 3 main types of faucets: ceramic disc, cartridge, and rotary ball. Learn more about each of them below.
- Ceramic Disc: This type of faucet uses a ceramic disc to control the flow of water. Different sized openings in the disc allow larger or smaller amounts of water through. Ceramic disc faucets are extremely reliable and rarely break down; replacing spout O-rings is usually the only repair required.
- Cartridge: These faucets are similar to ceramic disc faucets, except that a cartridge, rather than a disc, controls the flow of water. The most common repair is replacing worn out cartridges.
- Rotary Ball: A hollow ball rotating inside a socket controls both the water flow and the temperature in this faucet style. Most rotary ball faucets sold in box stores come with a plastic or brass ball, both of which tend to wear out over time. A stainless steel rotary ball provides better durability.
Once found primarily in commercial kitchens, modern pull-down faucets have a slimmer design that’s appropriate for residential applications. Use it as a traditional faucet or remove the head and use it as a sprayer to more accurately direct the flow of water.
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Common Faucet Repairs
There are numerous moving parts in a faucet that can wear down and stop working due to a single cause: rust. Even though most faucet parts are designed to withstand water damage, certain internal components aren’t meant to come into contact with water. If they do, corrosion quickly occurs. Faucet problem are also commonly caused by improper installation and inferior parts. A faucet leak can originate in one of several different locations, each requiring a different repair procedure. Leaks tend to come from the faucet downspout, the spot where the faucet and sink meet, and the various connections underneath the sink.
- Downspout faucet leaks result from worn gaskets, bad O-rings, or rusty springs. Finding these replacement parts yourself can be a hassle, as there are far too many faucet models and manufacturers out there to be able to reliably find the exact parts you need. A professional plumber, however, should have easy access to many replacement faucets and parts.
- A leak that springs from the space between the faucet and the sink or from other connections below the faucet generally can be attributed to overtightening or undertightening of one of the nuts holding the connections together or faulty O-rings inside those connections.
Kitchen Faucet Repair Costs
Plumbing costs vary widely from state to state due to licensing and certification regulations. Actual pricing in your area could vary significantly from the following costs.
- Plumbers, on average, charge between $50 and $75 per hour for labor. There is generally a service charge of $75 to $100 as well, so expect a one-hour repair to cost a minimum of $125.
- Most kitchen faucet leaks can be diagnosed and repaired in an hour or two for a total cost of $125 to $185.
- Replacement parts, with the exception of a faucet base or an expensive cartridge, shouldn’t exceed $20-$30. If you find yourself replacing numerous parts and spending more than this amount, installing a new kitchen faucet might make more sense.