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When is a dripping tap an emergency?

Leaky taps that release more than a couple of drops of water per minute may indicate a serious plumbing issue that requires immediate attention. Specifically, a fast drip or steady flow of water from a tap can damage your cabinets or floors through flooding and can lead to sky-high water bills because of significant leaks.

Several indicators signal that a leaking tap repair is a necessity and warrants emergency service:

  • The dripping continues even when tap is in the 'off’ position
  • The rate of dripping is rapid (more than a couple drops per minute)
  • The water leak is located in an area where water damage could be substantial, such as your sink, over electrical components, or appliances
  • The dripping indicates the pipe or tap itself may have burst or broken

In any high-stake situations, our team at Burwood Plumbing provides crucial plumbing interventions such as prompt shutdown of the main water supply to limit flooding and the expertise we offer from emergency plumbers ready to mend your tap. We provide round-the-clock service, available 24 hours day 7 days a week, to address emergencies before significant damage to water-dependent systems occurs.

For troublesome but slower drips that do not pose an immediate emergency flood risk, there may be time to troubleshoot DIY solutions like sourcing parts from your local hardware store or changing washers. however, it’s critical to swiftly fix dripping taps by employing expert plumbing intervention; You might wonder, 'how do I decide if it’s time to make a call?' – indeed, to avoid squandering water and incurring lofty bills, it’s wise to act promptly.

What causes dripping taps?

There are several common culprits behind dripping taps that may require plumbing repairs:

Worn washers

Over time, the rubber or ceramic washers within tap valves wear out, becoming one of the main causes of tap leaks. As they deteriorate, they lose their ability to form a watertight seal, letting water drip haphazardly around tap components, even when it’s firmly in the off position.

An O ring, encircling parts of the tap, is prone to cracking or warping, especially when tap turned is frequent. A damaged O-ring that malfunctions can also cause water to leak out even when the tap is firmly closed.

Numerous modern taps use cartridge valves to manage gas hot water flow and regulate its temperature, and these units can also endure issues like defective ceramic disc components and rubber seals. If these internal parts become damaged, the cartridge will leak.

An excess water supply pressure can cause tap components to loosen or deteriorate over time, which may result in unwelcome leaks. This can ultimately lead to leaks. The average water pressure in Sydney exceeds safe ranges in many homes.

Should you notice a persistent drip, our expert team of plumbers can help ensure your leaking tap’s underlying issue is correctly pinpointed for precise repairs. The amiable, licenced plumbers at Burwood Plumbing possess the essential know how for pinpointing the causes of leaking taps.

Worn tap washers

Worn out tap washers are one of the most common reasons for a dripping tap. Worn out tap washers are one of the most common reasons for a dripping tap. A dripping tap can, when a washer jumper valve is closed, revert to its initial position to halt the water flow.

When the tap is turned on, The valve’s washer jumper engages with the 'seat’ creating a water-tight lock, and addressing any issues with this process is crucial to fix leaking tap problems.

Over time, the continual operation and closure generate wear on the washer, eventually flattening and deteriorating which can cause leaks, a situation we provide solutions for through professional tap repair. Surface cracks and pits can prevent a watertight seal against the valve seat, meaning a leak can occur even when the tap is tightly closed. This allows water to leak out slowly even when the tap is turned off fully.

Installing a new tap washer is a simple repair, yet might sometimes necessitate you to call a plumber if complexity arises. However, it requires disassembling the tap valve unit, which contains small rubber and fiddly parts. If you’re hesitant, it’s best call a professional to avoid any potential property damage or personal injury.

Our dedicated team at Burwood Plumbing, seasoned from years of service across Sydney, is equipped to handle all repairs associated with your taps pipes, valves, and additional components. Noticing a constant drip? Do not dawdle — give us a ring, and we will organise a professional inspection and repair.

Damaged O-rings

O-rings are rubber seals fitted around movable parts within tap assemblies. They safeguard all your tap mechanisms that move, ensuring no water leaks out can cause issues when the tap is in use.

Over time, these O-rings can become cracked, deformed, or displaced from their proper positions. Damaged or incorrectly positioned O-rings often fail to provide a proper seal, a situation professional plumbers are skilled at rectifying.

Heed the warning signs of an O-ring issue to fix dripping tap problems efficiently:

  • Water leaking from the tap joints, connections or movable parts, even when the tap is turned off
  • The tap dripping when partially opened but not when fully open or closed
  • Wobbly tap handles indicating components need to be tightened

Replacing damaged O-rings can take careful disassembly of the tap, given the complication arising from numerous small internal parts. Our licenced Burwood Plumbing technicians have specialised experience servicing the intricate mechanisms within modern tap systems. We can diagnose O-ring issues and carry out precision repairs to stop annoying drips.

Faulty cartridges

Many modern taps use cartridge valve systems rather than traditional compression valves and washers. In some cases, cartridge valves, which contain rubber seals, ceramic discs, and other components, are crucial for properly controlling your hot water flow and temperature.

These internal components may incur damage over the span of time, but rest easy – our team is here to get the job done. Common signs of a faulty cartridge include:

  • Water leaking from the tap joints or handle
  • The tap dripping inconsistently when opened or closed
  • Issues controlling water temperature or flow

Replacing a damaged cartridge requires disassembling the tap body and extracting the cartridge unit itself - something that often requires specialised tools and expertise. Additionally, matching the specific replacement cartridge to your existing tap model, a critical component of many hot water systems, can be challenging.

For any plumbing problems, particularly those related to faulty cartridges, it’s wise to reach out to our expert team of local Sydney plumbers at Burwood Plumbing. We carry a wide inventory of replacement cartridges and have the practical knowledge to install them correctly for lasting repairs.

High water pressure

Excessively high water pressure can cause water hammer in taps, leading them to spring leaks or slowly drip. In many Sydney homes, water pressure levels that water supply your taps can exceed worryingly high pressures of over 500 kPa - well beyond the safe range. This intense pressure strains taps over time, accelerating wear and deformation of washers, O-rings and other internal parts.

To check your water pressure, attach a pressure gauge to an outside tap and turn the water on fully, or contact us for professional plumbing service to repair your issue. If the reading exceeds 500 kPa, a pressure limiting valve is recommended to protect your taps and address other plumbing risks, a service routinely provided by our trusted plumbing company.

However, expertise is required for installing pressure relief valves and regulators, especially when addressing a persistent tap drip. Our licensed plumbers are available any time day or night, poised to address any emergency plumbing requirements, and they’re well-versed in the local water supply issues on the North Shore and across Sydney’s suburbs. We can assess your current water pressure, advise you on suitable pressure relief products, and professionally install them to resolve plumbing issues related to high pressure.

By proactively managing water pressure, damage to taps and leaks causing higher bills can be minimised. Contact our team today for pressure checks and taps assessments.

How much water and money can a dripping tap waste?

An innocuous-seeming leak from a tap water can ultimately lead to the squandering of astonishing quantities of both water and funds.

According to Sydney Water, taps dripping persistently at one-second intervals can waste upwards of 12,000 litres water each year, necessitating prompt leaking tap repairs Sydney inhabitants rely on. With the average Sydney water bill around $1000 per year, that leak could add a significant 10% or more to your water bill.

Beyond the financial impact, your leaking taps also contribute to unnecessary water wastage - a serious environmental issue as Australia faces droughts and water shortages. Just one dripping tap can send approximately 5 full bathtubs of precious water down drain monthly from your leak, underscoring the necessity for our expert plumbing services.

Stopping even minor leaks is crucial both for preserving resources and curbing the increase of your water bills. Should your dripping tap persist despite your best DIY attempts, get touch with Burwood Plumbing straight away, so we can diagnose the underlying issue and carry out repairs.

How to temporarily stop a dripping tap

If your leaky tap is dripping persistently, there are a few temporary fixes you can try while waiting for a professional repair:

  • Turn off water supply to quarantine the leakage site. Use the stop tap near your home’s water metre or ask your property manager to shut off the main valve.
  • Disassemble the tap and attempt to fix your packing nut or compression faucet stem, but be gentle to avoid overtightening. This might slow down the minor leaks stemming from worn components.
  • Wrap plumber’s tape around leaky joints as a temporary seal. Monitor carefully and replace if moisture compromises the tape adhesive.
  • Place a container under the drip to catch water until plumbers can permanently fix the issue. Avoid overflow and slippery hazard risks.

While helpful in a pinch, these provisional measures will not mend the root problems, but rest assured, with our expertise in fixing leaking issues, your property is safe from hidden surprises. Do not hesitate to call us 1300 349 338 to arrange a repair rendezvous so we can properly assess and restore your taps to full working order.

DIY troubleshooting for a dripping tap

'How do I handle a persistent dripping tap that does not pose an immediate flood risk?' Homeowners can attempt some DIY investigations to potentially diagnose and rectify the problem:

Inspecting the tap

  • You’ll need use an isolation valve or the main stopcock to cut water flow and prevent additional leakage.
  • Disassemble the tap handles, cover plate, collar, and other removable exterior parts to access the internal valve unit.
  • Check washers and O-rings for signs of wear, tear or damage. Replace if severely worn or cracked.
  • Inspect valve seats for pitting, corrosion or mineral deposits. Clean or resurface if necessary.

Testing water pressure

  • Attach a pressure gauge to the nearest external tap.
  • Turn water supply back on and check pressure reading as the tap is fully opened.
  • If pressure exceeds 500 kPa, a relief valve may be required and professional plumbing assistance recommended.

For intricate modern taps, issues within cartridges or complex internals, significant water damage risks or pressures too high for DIY adjustment, our expert technicians are just a call away, ensuring that a professional plumber will provide reliable repairs without risking further damage.

Our seasoned experts specialise in tap repairs Sydney-wide, adeptly troubleshooting complex dripping tap dilemmas. We’ll diagnose faults, replace worn parts and fine-tune water pressures for a first-class, leak-free outcome.

When to call a professional plumber

Engaging a professional plumber is much more advisable if a dripping tap persists despite your best DIY troubleshooting efforts. Our licenced technicians at Burwood Plumbing have the expertise to properly diagnose and repair leaks by replacing worn washers, O-rings, cartridges and valves.

We recommend reaching out to our plumbers immediately, available for any plumbing emergency and on hand 24/7, if the drip is rapid or located in high-risk areas, or you suspect a pipe burst and serious flooding risks. We are available 24/7 to quickly contain damage from severe leaks before they escalate into catastrophic burst pipe incidents or appliance failures.

If water pressure exceeds 500 kPa, adjustments require professional equipment and knowledge. Our Sydney plumbers can install suitable pressure relief valves to protect your plumbing from strain damage. For tenants, approval and official invoices for tap repairs are also best managed by qualified tradespeople.

Dont tolerate the financial loss and wasted water from a persistent drip - give us at Burwood Plumbing a call on 1300 349 338 to schedule a leak assessment. Boasting over a quarter-century of serving Sydney, we’re equipped with practical experience and resources – free of hidden costs – to deftly solve any tap problem. Contact us today to stop annoying drips for good with reliable, quality workmanship guaranteed.

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