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Running vs. Leaking Faucet: What’s the Difference?

Honestly, when was the last time you paid attention to when and why there was water coming from your faucets when they were not in use? Although it may seem like a small problem, leaving a leaking faucet unresolved can turn into a plumbing nightmare and a costly repair. So, here are a few ways to tell if your faucet is leaking, or if your child forgets to turn it off!

What’s the Difference?

We know that this may be pretty obvious, but it’s something we felt we should point out — a running faucet has a steady stream of water gushing out, rather than small drips that occur every so often. The more steady the water pressure is, the less likely it is to miss the leak. Whereas with a slow-dripping leak, it’s more likely that you’ll miss it at first.

How to Spot the Problem

When it comes to leaking faucets versus running faucets, inspecting your fixtures for faulty or damaged parts is the easiest way to diagnose the problem. With a running faucet, it tends to be a stem or cartridge component.

Your sink is used multiple times every single day. It’s second nature and we don’t even have to think about it. But, what we also don’t think about is the wear and tear the rubber washers are taking. With this being said, this may also be a faulty part of your appliance. When you begin to look for these issues and take apart your appliance, take note of everything that seems to be wearing down. Replacing these items might just be the answer to your problems.

Leaking faucets are a bit different. While they have different faulty parts and may go through different steps to fix them, there can be some overlap.

Common problems of a leaking faucet are due to:

  • The valve set

  • Water pressure issues

  • Rubber washers

  • The stem or cartridge

How to Fix a Running Faucet

For a running faucet, here are some steps you need to take:

  1. Check water temperature: If the temperature is leaning more toward one side of the spectrum than the other, that can confirm which handle needs to be replaced.

  2. Shut off the water supply: This is obvious, but worth mentioning.

  3. Take apart the faucet handle: You’ll have to unscrew the faucets and take a wrench to the cartridge nut, but once that’s done, you’re ready to look for the faulty parts!

  4. Replace and check: Once you replaced all the parts that needed to be renewed, it’s time to check the faucet and see if it’s running back to normal!

If you’re still at a loss or if you’re unsure if you have a leaking versus running faucet, Pure Plumbing can help! We’re ready to diagnose and replace any fixtures in need. Call us at (702) 710-7388!