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How To Identify A Bad Valve Seat & Washer

By 18 July 2021January 5th, 2023Winnipeg plumbers


Do you have pesky plumbing problems like a leaky faucet? One of the leading causes of leaks is a bad valve seat or washer. Both of these pieces are subject to a great deal of friction which can cause normal wear and tear over time. As they become worn down, you may start to notice the faucet leaking near the handles. 


If you aren’t sure what role these pieces play in your faucet, here is a quick crash course so you’ll know what to expect:


What is a Washer? 

If you aren’t a plumbing professional, you may not fully understand how your faucet works. What exactly does the washer do? This piece sits inside the faucet, opening and closing whenever you turn the water on and off. As you might imagine, the constant movement of the washer leads to friction, creating wear and tear on other surrounding parts of the faucet. 


One of the issues is that it will stop sitting tightly on the valve seat which can lead to drips. 


The good news is that a washer can be easily replaced. You do not need to replace the entire faucet just to stop the leak, although that is one solution. While washers can be replaced, it is usually best to leave this type of work to the professionals. If the new piece is not installed properly, you may still end up with a leak. 


How Do You Know if it’s a Bad Valve Seat? 

Fortunately, a bad valve seat is relatively easy to identify. First, it helps to have a good understanding of what the valve seat actually is. It is located at the base of the device that’s used to turn the water on and off. The washer that opens and closes to allow water through is seated directly on top of the valve seat. 


If the issue with your faucet is a bad valve seat, you are likely to encounter issues with water dripping from around the handle area. The leak may occur whether the faucet is on or off. When this is the case, it is time to call in a plumbing pro to replace your valve seat so you can stop losing water. 


Replacing a valve seat can be a bit tricky, even for handy homeowners. It may require specialty tools like a seat wrench, valve seat grinder, and/or dresser. If you cannot locate a valve seat that is an exact match for what you have, you may need some of these other tools to help reshape the bad valve seat and stop the leak. 


Replacing Your Washer & Valve Seat

If you notice a leak in your faucet, there is a good chance it is caused by a faulty washer or valve seat. When you notice water leaking, you need to contact professional plumbing at Clean Line Plumbing. We can help you replace faulty parts or get a new faucet altogether!

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