Like people, faucets have a language all their own, and they cry out for help when something is going wrong. If your faucet has been making noise lately, learning how to understand what it might be telling you is the first step towards fixing the problem.
Spluttering And Splashing When Your Turn On The Water
If your faucet's water stream is broken and irregular, the most likely culprit is your faucet's aerator, or water filter. First, remove the aerator and look for any obvious buildup of residue, such as lime. Wash this off if possible. If the residue is too strongly stuck on, you can boil a mix of equal parts water and vinegar, then allow the aerator to soak in it for a few minutes. This should dissolve any remaining mineral deposits that have been obstructing your sink's water flow.
If you frequently have irregular water flow due to these deposits, you should consider contacting a water softening company. Softened water contains less of the minerals that build up over time and cause problems with your plumbing.
Clicking, Clanking, And Other Mechanical Sounds
While these sounds may indicate a plumbing problem, you should inspect your faucet's assembly if it seems to be the source of the noise. Have your toolbox ready because you'll need to disassemble it completely and examine each part for cracks, chips, or other damage. If your faucet seems undamaged, reassemble it and make sure everything is tightened sufficiently. Usually this process will resolve any mechanical problems with your sink's faucet.
If you discover cracked or broken parts in your faucet's assembly, you'll need to consider either replacing them or buying a new faucet altogether. Depending on the age of your current one, a full replacement can sometimes be a more economical choice. Newer fixtures can come with warranties protecting you from future damage, and will last for decades if properly maintained.
Squeaking When You Turn The Handle
If your sink's handles squeak when you try to turn them on, you likely have worn threads on your handle's screws. Test out each handle to identify the squeaky one, and remove it from your sink assembly. Liberally cover the inside threads of the handle's screw will plumber's grease, which you can buy at a hardware store. Reattach your handle and it should now be able to turn without scraping or squeaking.
In some cases, removing the handle may reveal that a damaged screw is the source of the squeaking. Depending on your faucet's handles, the fix for this may be as simple as buying and installing a replacement screw. However, in some case you may need to replace the entire handle. In these cases, you may need to take the handle with you to the store where you originally bought your faucet, or shop online for a matching handle to use as a replacement.
Drip, Drip, Drip
It can be a little complicated to fix a leaky faucet without the help of a skilled plumber. If it's going to be a few days until your sink can be fixed, and the dripping is keeping you up at night, don't start tearing your hair out. You can tie a piece of yarn or string around the mouth of your faucet with the tail dangling into the sink below. Water droplets will run along the string and into the basin silently, removing the torturous drip-drip-drip sound.
If your home has older plumbing, you can also use the string method to silence your sink during winter, when you need to leave them at a drip to avoid bursting a frozen pipe.
If your sink is crying out for help, don't ignore it. Problems can often get worse the longer they persist, while many causes of noisy faucets are easy to address. If you take some time out of your day to give your sink a good look, you'll rest easier knowing it's in tip top shape.
Check out sites like http://www.centralplumbingspec.com for more information and to find a professional near you.