How to Fix a Leaky Tap

You have most likely been victim to a leaky tap. Whether it is a slightly annoying drip or a much stronger leak, you should know that you have the ability to solve this issue as long as you’re willing to take a little time and effort. Keep reading if you want to know how you can fix your own leaky tap problem.

Gather your tools:

  • Replacement washers and O-rings
  • Adjustable wrench or spanner
  • Screwdriver
  • Tap lubricant / penetrating oil
  • Cloth

Step One:

Before you begin any of the work, turn your water supply off. Depending on where you live, your water supply may either by out on your street or within your bathroom, under the sink itself. It’s important to note that turning off the water supply means your entire house will not have water while you are doing the repairs.

Step Two:

Plug the drain in your sink to prevent losing any small parts like nuts or bolts. Remove the tap cover with a flathead screwdriver to reveal the bolt or screw underneath which is holding the tap together. Gently unscrew this to remove the tap handle. If it is too tough to remove by hand, use your wrench.

Step Three:

After removing the tap head, you should see the packing nut. Use your wrench to loosen it, and take a look at the stem, which sits just below the packing nut, on top of the O-ring. See if the stem has any damage or signs of wear.

Step Four:

In most cases, the O-ring and seat washer are responsible for leaky tap problems, so be sure to take these parts out and inspect them for damage and signs of wear also. Take your replacement washer and O-rings and re-assemble your tap with these new parts.


If in any case, you are not sure what to do with your leaky tap, take it to a professional.