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blog posts tagged with leak

How to Fix a Leaking Tap

Leaking taps are hardly an emergency, but if left to drip incessantly they can drive a person insane. A constantly dripping tap is also a tremendous waste of water, which if you are on a water meter, could prove to be rather expensive: a leaky tap can quite easily drip away up to 24,000 litres of water over a twelve month period. So why do people ignore leaky taps?


Most people put up with a leaking tap because they mistakenly think it is difficult to fix and if they have to call out a plumber, it will cost them a fortune. But really, sorting out a leaky tap is well within the capabilities of a competent DIY enthusiast and if you have the right tools to hand, there is no reason why you can’t fix the tap yourself.

Leaking Tap

The Right Tools for the Job

To fix a leaking tap you need a few basic tools:

  • A set of spanners
  • A screwdriver
  • Some clothes to protect the chrome tap fittings
  • Replacement tap washer

Fixing a Leaking Tap

Before doing anything, make sure you turn the water off at the mains stop tap. Do make sure the water is off before you remove the problem tap or you will end up soaked and standing in a foot of water, which won’t do either the kitchen or bathroom much good. To do this, turn the taps on and leave them to drain out until there is no more water in the pipes.

Remove the top of the tap and the screw beneath. This will enable you to take the tap head off. If the tap head is stuck, spray some WD-40 into it to loosen it up (you may need to leave it for ten minutes or so to work).

Remove the body of the tap using a spanner. Do this very carefully and protect the chrome surface with a soft cloth. The washer is the circular rubber donut at the end of the tap body. Replace it with a new washer and re-assemble the tap, making sure you don’t over tighten any of the parts.

Turn the water back on and test the tap (if no water comes out, make sure you have closed off all the other taps). Does it still leak? If so, the washer was not the underlying issue and you need to go back to the drawing board and start again.

When the Washer isn’t the Problem

More often than not, a worn out washer is not the cause of a leaking tap. A more likely root cause is the valve seat upon which the washer sits. Over time, this becomes worn, often as a result of lime scale in hard water. The surface develops fine grooves and etched lines, which break the seal of the washer and allow water to seep through. Grinding down this surface with a purpose made seat grinder will solve the problem by creating a smooth surface for the tap washer to adhere to.

Help! I Can’t Fix My Tap!

In theory it should take no more than 20 minutes to fix a leaking tap, but if the mechanism is worn or you have tried all of the above and you still have a leak, then it is probably time to call on a plumber to do the job for you. Most plumbers will charge for one hour’s work, even if the job takes them less than five minutes, including a cup of tea and a chat. If you want to pay as little as possible, try and be flexible about when the plumber can visit – if he is able to call in on his way home, for example, he might charge you less. Or wait for a few weeks and call him to install your new stainless steel towel radiator and replace your tap at the same time.

Don’t forget to get a couple of quotes before engaging a plumber and ideally go with someone you know or who comes with good references. 

Three Signs That Your Home Radiator is Going Bad

Here at ADIGE Towel Radiators, we often deal with customers who are seeking to replace their existing radiator for a more energy efficient solution, or who want to add a new radiator to an existing room in the home. Just as often as we handle these desires for our customers, however, we also help customers replace radiators that have malfunctioned. Lacking the proper heating capability during the winter months is not only inconvenient, but it can also be deadly under the worst of circumstances. Most people are not skilled in identifying or repairing radiators, though, so you may need some assistance in identifying whether or not the radiator has gone bad. Below, we've put together three of the most prevalent signs to watch out for to determine if it's time to finally replace your old radiator. 

The Radiator Leaks

Radiators function by distributing heat (and in some cases, water) throughout the structure to warm the home. The biggest problem with old radiators is that they can crack after years of use, which will cause them to become rapidly inefficient and will require either a repair or a complete replacement.

The number one indicator of a cracked radiator is the accumulation of water on the floor surrounding the unit. While it can sometimes be common for a radiator to release a small amount of moisture, puddles of water on the floor are indicative of a busted unit. Most home radiators require annual inspection and maintenance; if yours is currently leaking, then be sure to call a technician as soon as possible to see if it will need to be replaced.

Leaking towel radiator

The Radiator is Cold

A radiator that doesn't function properly can cause frustration and unnecessary anguish in the home. Another common problem that indicates a radiator is malfunctioning is it remaining cold while running. There are several issues that can cause this, but the good news is that most can be addressed without the need to replace the unit. Old thermostats in radiators are bound to go bad at one point or another – it may be time to replace it, as a malfunction here will render the unit worthless. The condensate pipe is another area that may need addressing; this pipe can actually back up and freeze during cold weather, and will need to be defrosted to restore the radiator's ability to heat. A cold radiator may also require the system to be bled, when too much air builds up in the unit. Thankfully, this issue can also be quickly corrected.

The Radiator Overheats

This can be a disastrous side-effect of a radiator going bad, and will often require more comprehensive, quick action to save the unit. A radiator overheats when the flow is blocked or there is a build-up of material somewhere inside the unit. This can unfortunately result in the radiator wasting energy at best, or cracking in the worst-case scenario. To minimise the likelihood of having to replace a home radiator, you should always contact a qualified service technician at the first sign of the unit overheating. When the lives of you and your family are at stake, you don't want to neglect a needed maintenance, repair or replacement of the device.

The three most common symptoms of a radiator going bad include overheating, a lack of heating properly and leaking. With a variety of radiators out there that provide heat through different methods, it's impossible to say for sure what exact issue may be at the root of the problem. The good news is that many signs of a radiator going bad can be fixed before it causes irreparable harm. For those who have to replace their heating solution, however, ADIGE Towel Radiators will always be here to provide top-notch service and the best radiators available today.