Each year, the average household’s leaks add up to almost 10,000 gallons of wasted water. Almost 10% of homes waste 90 gallons or more of water because of leaks.

Faucets are an essential part of any home, yet they’re also one of the most common parts of a house to spring a leak. A leaking faucet can disturb sleep and add hundreds of dollars to a water bill.

There are several different factors behind what causes a faucet to drip. In this article, we’ll explore some of the most common causes.

What Causes a Faucet to Drip?

There are a variety of possible reasons why your faucet is dripping.

Depending upon the cause behind your leaky faucet, you may be able to repair it yourself. In other instances, it might be best to call a professional with the appropriate tools and experience to deal with the problem. Whether to DIY or call a professional will depend upon your comfort level in dealing with the problem and whether you own the necessary tools.

Let’s dive into some of the most common causes of a dripping faucet.

1. Defective O-Ring

An O-ring is a small disc attached to a stem screw. The stem screw is the part used to hold the handle of a faucet in its place.

With all of these tiny moving parts, it’s only natural it’d be an area prone to leaking. It’s easy for the O-ring to become loose from constant movement or to degrade from wear and age.

If you have a leaky faucet near the handle, then the most probable cause is the O-ring.

2. Corroded Valve Seat

The valve seat is a small piece connecting the faucet and the spout.

When a valve seat starts to leak, it’s because water-sediment has accumulated within it. This leads to corrosion, which in turn leads to leaking from the spout area.

If your faucet is dripping from the spout, it may be the valve seat.

3. Old Washer

Every time you turn on your faucet, the washer is pushed against the valve seat. The constant friction of a busy faucet leads the washer to break down.

If you notice your faucet is leaking around the spout, it may be the washer.

4. Loose Parts

One of the most common causes behind a leaky faucet is that it has loose parts.

Faucets are made up of many small parts that all work together to enable the flow of water. After being turned on and off over several years, it’s natural for these small parts to work loose or start to decay.

Don’t Ignore a Leaking Faucet

Now that we’ve gone over what causes a faucet to drip, it’s important to make sure you take care of the problem as soon as possible. You don’t want a small leak to turn into a catastrophic problem like water damage to your home.

Whatever the cause is behind your leaking faucet, a professional from Global Plumbing can identify and fix the problem for you. Don’t let a leaky faucet stress you out any longer. If you live in the Sacramento, CA area, contact us today to have all your leaking problems taken care of!