Economical Ways to Repair a Bathroom Sink
Many problems with the function and appearance of your bathroom sink can be repaired at low cost. Study these tips below for economical ways to fix problems with your bathroom sink.
Faucet Leaks and Drips
Check where the faucet is leaking. If it is around the turn handles, you will need to replace a washer or O-ring. Remove the handles, find the O-ring or washer at the base and replace it. If your faucet leaks out the spigot, a washer just inside the spigot is no longer working, so replace it. If your faucet leaks around the base, remove the whole faucet, sand around the base to remove mineral build-up and rust, apply a waterproof sealant and put it back into the sink. Caulk around the faucet base with a white waterproof caulking. Allow the caulking to dry completely before using the sink taps again.
Taps that either will not turn on or will not shut off completely can be repaired. Remove and strip out all the old washers and O-rings and replace them. Lubricate and protect all parts with plumber's grease, then reinstall. However, if they are over 20 years old, replace them with a single handle mixing tap at a reasonable cost.
If your pipe only leaks when very cold water is run through it, this leak is simply from condensation on the outside of your metal pipe. If the pipe functions well otherwise, wrap it in flexible foam insulation, secured in place with plumber's tape all the way around. If the pipe leaks no matter what the water temperature, check all the pipe joints, where you see an external ring around the pipe. Tighten metal pipe rings with an adjustable wrench. Use only your hand to tighten pipe rings on PVC (plastic) pipe.
Drain Plug Does Not Seal
Look under your sink to see if your drain plug has a horizontal arm connecting it to a vertical rod with holes in it. This is the popup assembly. Problems can originate with the pivot nut or the vertical assembly rod. The pivot nut, holding the arm to the sink bowl, may be too loose. Remove the nut and arm, and apply some plumber's grease or Vaseline petroleum jelly to the nut. Use an adjustable wrench to tighten the pivot nut slightly. Check whether this improves the snugness of the drain plug when closed and helps it hold a steady open position without slipping. Examine the entry loop on the popup rod where the horizontal arm is inserted. If it is damaged, the arm may slip out of place. Move the horizontal arm to the next higher loop.
Stained Porcelain and Chrome
Rust stains on your porcelain sink and its chrome may be due to several causes. Clean the stains using a calcium, lime and rust remover. If they start to form again, investigate the source. Hard water combined with old metal pipes are the most likely culprits for rust stains. Replace your under sink pipes with PVC pipes and change over others in the house at your first opportunity.