Is your tub faucet leaking? If so, you may need Houston bathtub repair from your plumber. Leaking, dripping tub faucets are not just a nuisance, they can waste gallons of water each year and usually signal a problem with either your bathtub plumbing or fixtures. Therefore, if you have a leaky bathtub faucet, make sure you get it inspected and repaired straight away. In this article, we’ll go over some common reasons why tub faucets leak and what repairs look like for these issues.
Houston Bathtub Repair for a Leaky Tub Faucet
Houston plumbing repairs for a leaking bathtub faucet can range from simple to complex. Most people get professional repairs from a qualified plumber to properly diagnose and fix the issue. This is because repairs frequently require specialized knowledge, tools, and parts. While in some cases you may be able to DIY repairs, it may be worth the peace of mind to hire pro plumbers to fix your leaking tub faucet.
Why Get Houston Bathtub Repair for Dripping or Leaking Faucets?
Now, if you just have a few drips coming from the tub spout, you might wonder whether you need to fix it at all. After all, it’s just a little bit of water, and it’s not damaging your floors, walls, or other parts of your home. What’s the big deal, right?
Actually, even a slightly drippy tub faucet means there’s something wrong with your plumbing or the fixture. These issues tend to get worse (and more expensive to fix) over time, so it’s better to get Houston bathtub repair as soon as you notice the issue.
Another reason to fix your leaky or drippy tub faucet? Even just 10 drips a minute can waste a lot of water. About a gallon every single day. This means you’re not only wasting water, but your utility bills may also reflect that extra water use. So, don’t ignore the problem, get it fixed ASAP. In the next sections, we’ll discuss some common leaky tub faucet situations and what might be causing them.
Houston Bathtub Repair: The Faucet Leaks When the Water is Off
One of the most common types of tub faucet leaks is when the faucet continues to leak after you have turned it off. This might be in the form of dripping or even a small flow of water. In these cases, there may be a few different things wrong that require Houston bathtub repair. Most commonly it’s either the handle, cartridge, or pipes.
It Could be a Damaged Faucet Handle
Are you sure the faucet handle is off all the way? It might seem like a silly question, but it’s actually a common reason why you might have a leaky tub faucet. Now, we trust that you know to double check that the faucet is totally off before you call us for Houston plumbing repairs. However, the problem may be that the handle is actually damaged and preventing you from shutting the water off all the way.
For instance, a cracked, corroded, or dented handle may not sit tightly in the off position. This can make it look like your faucet is leaking after you think you’ve completely turned the water off.
In these cases, usually the best option is to simply replace the tub handle. Usually, damaged handles aren’t repairable. Our team can supply a new tub faucet handle that matches your bathroom’s décor and stop the leak if it’s caused by a damaged handle.
Houston Plumbing Repairs for Damaged Tub Cartridges
In other cases, the leak may be due to the tub cartridge, also known as the stem. The bathtub cartridge is a type of valve that actually controls when water comes out of the pipes. These plumbing components attach to the faucet handle and to the cold and hot water supply pipes leading to your bathtub. When you turn the faucet on, the valve opens to let water in and also controls the flow of cold and hot water flowing down the pipes and into the tub spout. Worn or damaged cartridges can lead to a leaky or dripping tub faucet because it may not make a watertight seal against the water supply pipes.
Houston bathtub repair for cartridge related leaks generally involves replacing the entire cartridge, though if it’s simply a damaged washer, we may simply replace that. This is a repair that is typically best left to plumbers because removing and reinstalling the cartridge requires special tools, often depending on the exact brand and set up for your plumbing. Also, you need the exact part and installation can be difficult.
Houston Bathtub Repair for Damaged Pipes
While less common, damaged pipes can also be responsible for a leaky tub faucet. This is generally only the case if the type of supply pipes used during construction or replacement are not right for the application. In these cases, the pipes can become chipped or cracked and not create a good seal with the cartridge, allowing water to leak. Usually these leaks are actually invisible and cause damage behind the walls, but sometimes they may cause a leaky tub faucet. Once again, this type of Houston bathtub repair is better left to the professionals to ensure your plumbing meets code and quality standards.
Houston Bathtub Repair: Tub Faucet Leaks When the Shower is On
If you’re looking for solutions to a leaky tub faucet, you might be searching for how to repair a tub spout that leaks when the shower is on. This is also known as a stacking leak because the tub faucet and the shower head share the same water flow in a tub/shower combo. If this is the issue for your tub, then it’s typically the diverter. Usually you’ll find the diverter on the tub faucet itself as a knob that you pull up to turn the shower on. What happens when you do this is a small part blocks water flow to the faucet so it instead travels up the plumbing to your shower. The diverter may not be working due to debris or mineral deposits from hard water. In other cases, it may need replacement.
Try Cleaning the Diverter and the Diverter Groove
One thing you can try on your own is cleaning off the diverter and the diverter groove inside the tub faucet to remove any debris or buildup that prevents a tight seal. Usually this involves detaching the faucet from your tub for cleaning and removing the diverter by unscrewing the small knob on top. You can usually soak the parts in a vinegar solution to help dissolve mineral deposits. Just remember to remove any rubber gaskets or washers beforehand, as vinegar can dry them out and make them brittle.
To clean the diverter groove inside the faucet, you can use the same method and use a toothbrush to thoroughly clean inside. In some cases, really stubborn buildup may require a small file to remove, though you need to use a light hand to make sure you don’t remove any of the actual faucet material.
Replacing the Bathtub Faucet
If you have a damaged diverter, typically it’s best to simply replace the entire bathtub faucet. While you can replace the diverter itself, it’s often difficult to find the exact part and generally whole faucets are inexpensive and simple to replace.
Houston Bathtub Repair: The Faucet Leaks Out the Back
Now, what if by a leaky tub faucet, you mean that there’s water leaking from the back or base of the faucet when it’s running, rather than flowing out of the mouth of the faucet? If this is the case, then it’s typically something wrong with the faucet itself. It means the spout no longer has a watertight seal with the pipe.
Loose Seal Between the Pipe and the Faucet
Now, in some cases this leak is because the spout has just become loose over time. Therefore, you may just need to tighten it back on properly. To do so, you need to know how the spout sits on the pipe.
Some spouts twist directly onto the pipe. Others slip on and a set screw holds them in place. So, look at your spout from all angles to see if you see a small set screw to tell if it’s slip on or screw on. For slip on spouts, use an allen wrench to tighten the set screw and see if that fixes the leak. For twist on, typically all you need to do is turn it clockwise.
If this doesn’t work, or if you notice there are cracks or other damage to the faucet causing the leak, then replacing the spout is the best option.
Expert Plumbing Solutions from Santhoff Plumbing Company
Our expert plumbers at Santhoff Plumbing offer friendly service and quality plumbing repairs, maintenance, and installation for your home. Our team goes above and beyond to ensure your home’s plumbing is safe and in great condition. Whether you need help with a leaky tub faucet or need Houston water heater repair for major leaks, trust our team for all your plumbing needs. Schedule an appointment online today or call us 24/7 at (281) 759-5000 for plumbing emergencies.