slow drip at washer hook-up?

ems_ncApril 25, 2010

We are in the process of re-doing our laundry room. We moved the washer and dry out, and now that they are unhooked we notice that one of the faucets for the washer is slowly dripping while the other is completely dry. What do you think this means and what do you recommend? Our house is 25 years old and this is the original assembly.

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It depends on where the drip is coming from.
If from the hose connection and a little more twisting on the valve handle doesn't stop the drip, a new washer, and maybe a valve seat is the fix.
If from the valve stem, tightening the 'B' nut around the stem or replacing the packing underneath should work.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 2:34PM
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Although there could be several causes, the most common cause is the supply valve most likely needs a new rubber valve seat washer. If you have a few hand tools and are a bit mechanical, you can do this yourself. The part is very inexpensive (about 2 cents each) and can be purchased anywhere, even Walmart. Most times they are sold in packages of various common sizes.

I suspect that since this valve is commonly left in the open position to supply the washing machine, over 25 years the rubber has hardened and a small build up of deposits has collected on it. Even if it is just dirty, you'll have to open it up to clean it and it would be best to replace the rubber seat. If you want to go all the way, you may as well also change the "O" ring(s) on the stem itself (another 2 cents). If you do all this while you're in there, the valve will be as good as new when you put it back together. The whole job should take about 10 minutes for a newbie and about 2-5 for a pro. To have a pro come and do it could cost between $75.00-$125 depending on your area and who you call.

When you buy the kit for about $1-$2, it'll also have some screws in it. When you replace the rubber seal, you should go ahead and use a new screw when reassembling. Be sure to replace the hoses on the washing machine with good quality hoses while you are at it. Burst washing machine hoses are one of the number one causes of home flooding and Murphy's Law says it will be while you are away on vacation.

Another option...if you are not in the habit of opening and closing these valves, put a bucket under the drip or, buy a plastic cap that screws over and seals the spigot and finish the remodel. When you hook back up, the whole thing is a non-issue.

Personally, I close those valves off when I am gone for more than a day. Even good hoses, and internal washing machine valves have the potential to spring a leak.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 2:43PM
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Sorry Randy, didn't mean to jump in on you, we must have been posting at the same time.

Since I suspect you are a first timer, I'd like to also warn you...turn off the main water supply before starting!!!! Also drain the pipe by opening the valve, into a small bucket or pot. Keep a towel on the floor underneath your work to catch any drops while you work.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 3:03PM
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Thanks for your replies. For now we are going with a bucket to catch the drip and working on the floor and walls like we planned and will try to deal with it then. Your good advice is very appreciated!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 4:53PM
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Keep in mind that this leak won't heal itself and will only become a bigger problem down the road.

With everything moved out of the way NOW is the time to fix the leak.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 5:24PM
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