Plumbing Tips from an Avid DIY-er

Understanding the Basics of Sink Drain Leaks

The sound of a drip in your kitchen can be worrisome, especially if you're not sure where it's coming from. If you've checked your kitchen faucet and you're sure that it's not the culprit, it's time to start looking at the pipes underneath the counter. Here's a look at what you need to know about kitchen sink drain leaks and how your plumber will deal with them.

How Do You Isolate a Sink Drain Leak?

The first step to isolating any kind of leak is to determine when you hear it. If you're hearing the drip all the time, that's often a sign that the leak is in your incoming water line. However, when you only hear the leak if there's water in the sink, that usually means that it's your drain line that's leaking.

Once you've determined that your sink's drain line is leaking, it's time to figure out where that leak is. Clear everything out of the cabinet under your sink and sit down there with a flashlight. Shine the light on the drain line, starting at the gasket that attaches the drainpipe to the sink basin.

Feel for moisture, and look for any signs of drips. When you find water, trace it back with your finger or the flashlight until you see where it's seeping out. The most common leak points are the gasket at the sink basin and the pipe joints. Gaskets and pipe joint seals will fail over time, so that's where you should focus your search.

What Do You Do When You Find a Leak?

You might think that a leak in your sink's drain line is an easy fix. For a professional, it is. However, if you try to repair it yourself, you risk causing more problems than you fix. Remember that plumbing infrastructure must be properly connected, sealed, and tightened. However, if you overtighten it, you risk damaging the seal.

Additionally, since you'll have to disassemble the drain pipes to fix the leak, it's in your best interest to work with a plumber. Disassembling your plumbing lines can cause brittle pipes to break, and may leave you with other seals failing after the fact. A professional can pre-emptively address many of these issues to ensure that your drain leak repair is comprehensive and secure.

Don't let a leak become a serious problem that leads to costly water bills, water damage, and other issues. Reach out to a plumber right away when you notice a problem so that you can be sure that the work is done correctly and professionally.


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