Stiff Taps and What To Do About Them

There are many reasons that your taps may become difficult to switch on and off. Maybe they are old, you have a leak, or the valve has become scaled up. Whatever the reason, it’s an issue that you need to deal with right away before it becomes a real and very expensive problem later on.

If you don’t get it looked at by an expert plumber, such as those at Plumbing Detectives, you could end up forking out a lot of money later on. This will also waste you time as you’ll struggle to shower, wash dishes, makes drinks... you won’t realise how much you use water until it’s no longer an option! A more complex fix will take much longer to sort out, leaving you in a mess. 

But what if I don’t want to use a plumber?

It may be essential to get the experts in to look at your taps, but if you wish to give it a go you can at least look to see if the problem is easy to locate. It may end up being a really simple fix. 

The first thing you’ll need to do, before you start anything, is to turn your water off at the mains. This will prevent any accidents from occurring as you take a look at your taps. You will then need to disassemble your tap. How you do this will depend on exactly what taps you have, as shown by the very handy guide from Home Tips

However, here are the basic steps you’ll need to take, no matter what system you use:

  • Take off the tap disc – the part labelled H or C.
  • Pull out the handle.
  • You will then be able to pry apart the tap with each. Be sure to lay the bits out as you dissemble them, making it easier to put the tap back together. 

Once you have worked out exactly what the problem is you will then need to decide if it’s a piece that needs cleaning or replacing. If you aren’t sure, or do not feel that it’s something you can’t do, or you simply don’t have the time, then it’s time to call in the experts. 

Tips to prevent your taps from getting stiff...

...because of course, prevention is always better (and less expensive!) than a cure:

  • Spray your stopcock with WD40 every now and again.
  • Keep an eye on your water valve to check it isn’t causing any issues.
  • Replace the washers every so often to prevent them from becoming too old.
  • Keep your taps free from lime scale, as this will lead them to seize up quicker.
  • The same with damp – prevent your rooms from becoming too wet to help your taps live longer.

But if it’s too late for any of that, and you do need to get new taps, here is a very handy guide from QS Supplies about selecting the right sort of taps for you, with some very useful considerations such as your water supply, the pressure, and the size (see, it isn’t all about getting the right look!)