Sink Leaks That You Can Fix Yourself

Sink Leaks That You Can Fix YourselfIf you’ve ever had a plumbing problem with your sink, you know how inconvenient it can be. Since you depend on your sinks for teeth-brushing, hand-washing, and a variety of other tasks, a problem with one of the sinks at your home in the Puyallup area can cause delays that leave you frustrated.

For many sink repairs, it’s a good idea to call the professionals at FloHawks to ensure you don’t wind up with a major plumbing emergency on your hands. Other sink leaks and plumbing problems, though, are fairly simple to fix on your own if you have the correct tools and materials. If you’re ready to tackle a plumbing repair on your own, here are a few types of sink repairs that are do-it-yourself-friendly.

Water Everywhere

In recommending these repairs, we at FloHawks want to make sure that you achieve great results. The last thing we want is for a large problem to occur that results in major water damage to your home. Therefore, while we’ll mention it in the individual sections, we want to highlight here that the most important step in any plumbing repair is to first turn off the water supply.

For sinks, this can typically be done using the localized water shut-off valve located under the sink. If for some reason your sink doesn’t have a localized valve, you’ll need to shut off the water to your entire home using the main water shut-off valve. Though this may not be the most convenient approach, it’s crucial to stop the flow of water to your faucet to ensure that if a problem does occur, it stays contained.

Bad Washer

If your faucet has been keeping you up at night with a rhythmic dripping sound, it’s time to take action. Depending on how severe the leak is, your faucet could be wasting several gallons of water a day, which will make a big impact on your water and sewer bills. Fortunately, thanks to its easy accessibility, tackling a leaky faucet is totally achievable for the weekend handyman.

Located in the portion of your faucet where the water exits is one of the most common culprits behind a leaky faucet: a worn-out washer. This washer is what helps form a watertight seal in your faucet when you turn off the water.

Since this component has to move every time the water is turned on and off, it experiences quite a bit of wear and tear, meaning it tends to wear out more quickly than the other faucet components. To replace this component, after turning off the water supply, all you have to do is unscrew the aerator, remove the washer and replace it with a new one of the same size, and then screw the aerator back into the faucet.

Old O-Ring

Another common cause of leaks from faucets that we see at FloHawks is a worn-out O-ring. This component provides a seal where the water supply handle meets the rest of the faucet. Since water passes through this area on its way out of the faucet, a bad O-ring can cause leaking underneath the handles.

In addition to causing a lot of wasted water, a leak here can cause water to flow down the bolts that hold your water in place, resulting in water damage to the floor or vanity that sits under the sink. If you have to replace your washer, it’s a good idea to go ahead and replace the O-ring as well.

To replace the O-ring, you’ll want to first turn off the water supply. This is especially crucial for this repair as skipping this step could cause water to shoot vertically in your kitchen or bathroom.

Next, carefully remove the handle screw cover using a flathead screwdriver. Once the screw is exposed, remove the screw, which should then allow you to remove the handle. With the handle removed, you should be able to see the defective O-ring. Pull it off and replace it with one of the same size and thickness.

If your faucet has two handles, you’ll want to replace both O-rings at the same time, repeating the same procedure outlined above. Since both O-rings are exposed to water in essentially the same quantities, they will likely wear out at approximately the same pace. Since you already have your tools out, it’s a great idea to replace both O-rings at once.


One last common cause of leaks in a faucet is corrosion somewhere in the faucet. Typically, when corrosion occurs, it’s best to replace the faucet since the corrosion will eventually make its way to the surface of the faucet, resulting in a poor appearance.

The most common internal component to experience corrosion is the valve seat. This component is located where the main body of the faucet and the spout of the faucet meet. This means it is quite hard to reach this component to replace it if it does fail.

Fortunately, replacing your faucet is a do-it-yourself-friendly project except in rare situations that will require the assistance of FloHawks. Simply turn off the water, remove the water connections from the faucet, remove the washers holding the faucet to the vanity and slide the old faucet out, and then reverse the procedure to install a new faucet.

Another component that can experience corrosion is the seals that prevent the water supply lines from leaking. Especially if you have hard water, the seals can build up mineral deposits that can cause the materials in the seals to corrode and become brittle.

Given the pressure associated with these locations, a failed seal could result in a significant leak. If you notice a problem here, turn off the water supply before going to gather the tools and supplies required for the fix.

Know When to Ask for Help

Though many sink leaks are easy to fix yourself, there are certainly instances where the pros from FloHawks should get involved. If you get into a project and realize that you’re in over your head, it’s important to ask for help before you break an important component that could cause a major release of water into your home.
If you feel as though you have to use excess force to complete a certain step in a repair or if you notice excess corrosion or preexisting water damage, it’s a good idea to call FloHawks. That way, we can assess the issue and apply the correct fix to ensure you experience long-lasting results.

At FloHawks, we are happy to help you maintain your home in whatever ways we can. That’s why we offer a full range of plumbing services including installation, maintenance, and repair. We can work on plumbing fixtures of all types, clogged drains, septic systems, and much more.

Our commitment to service is affirmed through our thousands of 5-star reviews from satisfied customers just like you. We’ve been serving our community since 1968 with 24/7 service and fully licensed technicians. We know you have a choice when it comes to your plumbing needs in Puyallup and the South Puget Sound, so we work hard to earn your business every day. If you’ve got a plumbing need that you can’t quite tackle yourself, give us a call today at 253-446-8485 and allow us to exceed your expectations.

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