Compression Valve Faucets
This post is part of a series about bathroom remodeling (we service the greater San Jose CA metro area), as well as part of a sub-series on bathroom faucets. To access either of the lead posts please select one of the links below.
Valve Type = Reliability
There are four different types of valves used in faucets (bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, event outside garden hose bibs). Listed in the order of reliability, they are:
This post focuses on fixing compression valve faucets.
I’m assuming you would never buy one when you’re buying a new faucet. Compression valves or the original style faucet valve that’s been around since Roman times. They work, but they are the least reliable form of faucet available today.
When selecting a new faucet, go with a ball valve or better yet a ceramic disc valve.
However, if you have a broken one that needs fixing…..
The image at the top right shows a cutaway showing the operation of a compression valve faucet. The image below is another one.
These valves work by pushing the valve stem (please don’t let it confuse you that cartridges are also called stems even though they’re different) against the valve seat (the piece underneath the valve stem) to close the valve. When you turn the handle one way, the valve stem rises and allows water to flow. When you turn the handle the other way the valve stem lowers against the valve seat and closes the flow of water.
Why am I going on and on about this? Because it’s not enough to change the valve stem, you must also change the valve seat. It is a small brass piece that screws in place and must be removed (and the new one reinstalled) with a special tool. See below.
The valve seat is a small piece of brass and it is what the washer on the bottom of the valve stem pushes against. The mineral content of your water will scratch it because brass is a soft metal.
Although these faucets work, when you are replacing your faucet because it’s totally shot or you’re doing a bathroom remodel, do yourself a favor and install either a ball valve faucet or a ceramic disc faucet. The last longer and when they do not repairs it’s easier.
The Solera Group provides expert bathroom remodeling services in the greater San Jose metro area.
Need help with your bathroom remodel? Please contact us…..