Leaky faucets can be a problem in the most unlucky moments of many homeowners. Leaks of this type are caused by either a defective cartridge or buildup in the plumbers’ joint. In both cases, the leak can cause an enormous mess and water damage. It can be fixed through the most simple methods. It is possible to rebuild a leaking faucet cartridge or replace a leaky cartridge with a new one.


To know what is wrong with a faucet, it is best to have a plumber check it out. There are several symptoms of a leaking faucet that a homeowner can notice. The most common is water dripping from the faucet handle or spout and pooling underneath the basin/bowl. This is usually caused by the most common leak problems found in this type of faucet.

If you cannot find a leaky source, then you can try to fix it yourself. When fixing leaks, it is best to use the sink as a guide. Once the source of leaking has been located, the next step is to remove the offending piece and any debris that may have caused the leak.

How to Fix It

Fixing a leaky faucet is not always easy, but the process can be simplified by first taking out the faucet cartridge. Here are steps on how to do so:

Step 1: To begin, turn the water off by shutting off the main valve or filling the sprayer with water. Hold the handle in a position where it will not move while you have removed the cartridge.

Step 2: Next, take out the faucet handle and the cartridge. This is done by unscrewing it from its base using a screwdriver. Note that there are two cartridges: a cartridge with a ball and spring mechanism and a metal disk mechanism for handles.

Step 3: Take out the cartridge and inspect it for any visible cracks, chips, or debris inside it. If the faucet handle feels too loose, then you should tighten it up using a wrench.

Step 4: After inspecting the cartridge, remove the faucet water restrictor and check inside it. A water restrictor can be a ball or small rubber ring that helps to seal the faucet. It is placed inside of the handle to prevent leakage at joints.

Step 5: Once the restrictor is removed, then you can remove the handle. Note that the faucet stem will be sealed with some plastic or rubber gasket. This is to prevent leakage at joints.

Step 6: Next, unscrew the handle from its base using a screwdriver. Keep in mind that there is a rubber washer or gasket underneath the handle. This is usually found beneath a screw. Remove it and inspect it for any cracks, chips, or tears.

Step 7: If you have discovered any cracked pieces, then it is time to replace them. When removing the old pieces, make sure to clean out debris from the inside of the faucet by using soap and water. Lubricate the new parts before their installation.

Step 8: To reattach the handle, reverse these steps. Once installed, place the handle back on its base and tighten it with a wrench. It is also important to make sure that the handle spins freely before tightening it down.


It is essential to inspect your cartridge faucets for leaks regularly. The first step in preventing leaks is to check all of the connections inside your faucet. Check to make sure that all the parts are connected tightly and are not loose. The next step is to make sure that no washers or O-rings are damaged or worn out. These parts should be replaced if found unworkable. Having a plumber check out your faucets at least once a year is essential for preventing leakage problems.

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As you can see, it is not necessary to call a plumber every time your faucet starts to leak. It is possible to diagnose and fix the problem yourself by following the simple steps above. However, if time restricts you from working, then you should call a plumber and get it repaired right away. This can avoid future repairs and potential water damage.