How to Service Taps
While re-washering, check the tap for leaks around the handle and shroud, and for binding.
Leaks are caused by wear in the spindle seals. Older type rising spindles are sealed with fibre packing; new type non-rising spindles have rubber ‘0’ ring seals.
On the old type, undo the gland nut on top of the mechanism (which governs the tightness of the spindle). Wind a few turns of PTFE tape around the spindle and poke it down into the body of the mechanism, then apply a smear of silicone gel and replace the nut. Try the tap:
- if the spindle is too tight, loosen the nut a fraction;
- if it still leaks, tighten half a turn.
On the new type, hook out the circlip holding the spindle and withdraw it from below. Lever off the ‘O’ rings, smear on some silicone gel, and slide on the replacements.