Don’t replace that leaking faucet until you read this!

leaking faucet

Faulty faucets are the leading cause of water damage in a home- which is made worse by the fact that faucets are often replaced by homeowners or handymen (often incorrectly).  Replacing faucets can be frustrating, time-consuming, and costly- especially when they’ve caused water damage.

Below are some tips for getting the best outcome when replacing that faucet based on my experience with countless repairs and inspecting over a thousand homes.


Two-handle faucets last longer than single-handle faucets.

Single-handle faucets are convenient and appear more modern, but the mixing valve used in single-handle faucets is more prone to fail (more complicated components). Single-handle faucets fail more catastrophically and often- sometimes within a year of purchase. The same is true for sink and tub/shower faucets.  Two-handle faucets will be a better choice for rentals or your home if you value longevity over convenience.  

Two-handle faucets may be less convenient but can last longer and are less prone to water damage than single-handle faucets.

2 handle faucet larger image 200 x 200 2
2 handled faucets tend to leak less
single control faucet smaller square
Are single-handle faucets worth the convenience?

Purchase faucets from a Plumbing supply store, not a big box store

Manufacturers sell cheaper versions of their faucets to big box stores like Lowes and Home Depot to keep the items more affordable than their competitors- the cheaper or plastic components are more prone to break and fail over time.  Any money saved buying the faucet from a big box store will be lost when it comes time to replace it and repair any water damage.

Faucet should be replaced by Plumbers

Replacing a faucet is relatively straight forward, but the slightest error can cause catastrophic water damage, which is why most people should hire a licensed plumber that offers a one-year warranty.

If replacing the faucet, don’t forget to buy a plumber’s putty, thread sealant tape, and two braided transition hoses (longer is better than shorter!).  Only one braided transition hose should be used per connection.   If you are lucky you’ll only need to go to the hardware store once!

Install a drip tray and a leak sensor under the faucet

A full-size rubber mat installed under the kitchen and bathroom sinks will protect water from leaks.  By placing a leak sensor on the mat, the sensor will alarm when wet and alert the occupants of an issue.
Example of a drip tray
Example of a leak sensor, blue tooth models are slightly more expensive.

Plumbing Inspections in Asheville and WNC

Builder Buddy scrutinizes plumbing areas to search for leaks and potential water damage as part of our Pre-sale Inspections, Commercial Inspections, Home Health Checks, Pre-Drywall Inspections, 11 Month Builder Warranty Inspections, Annual Maintenance Inspections, Multi-Family Home Inspections, and Annual Maintenance Inspections.  We also provide additional inspection and testing services such as Radon Testing, Water Testing, Well and Septic Inspections, Mold Testing, and more.  We are a highly-rated inspection company based out of Asheville that provides high-quality inspection and testing reports and services.  If you are located within 40 miles of Asheville, call us today to set up an appointment or schedule here.

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