Not every plumbing job needs a licensed plumber. In fact there are many small jobs that can easily be handled by the do-it-yourself plumber. So when it comes to DIY plumbing, are ceramic taps an option for you to install?
Well let’s start by better understanding ceramic taps. It is only in the last few years that ceramic taps have appeared on the market. And each year they become increasingly popular. There are no washers in these taps like in the old taps systems. Rather they use two close fitting ceramic discs instead of the washers. The one disc is in a fixed position and the other turns up to 90% with the handle. These two disc are aligned in the open position. When it comes to obvious features, it’s the quarter turn verses the two and half turns of the washer system that stands out. The ceramic taps don’t have the washers. Instead they have the two ceramic discs. The upper disc is controlled by the tap itself while the bottom disc is in a fixed position on the base of the tap itself.
There are lots of pros to installing ceramic over rubber washers. The ceramic discs are really hard and so they withstand a lot of punishment. They are very good at withstanding the erosion from the water over time. They still wear out but it just takes a lot longer. You’ll know when it’s time to replace by the drip. A ceramic top requires little effort to turn because it is such low friction. You can actually turn it on with your pinky with little problem. So if you are older, have arthritis, there is any other reason you lack hand strength a ceramic tap will be a real treat. What you have to remember is you don’t have to turn the tap as far as you do on a washer based tap. If you do you turn it on too far too fast you’ll get a real blast of water.
Installation of ceramic taps is no different than installation of traditional taps. There are some basic steps to follow to remove the old and install the new.
1. Turn the water off to the sink, shower, or tub where you’ll be replacing the taps.
2. Turn the hot water tank off.
3. Pop off the cold and hot water tabs on top of the taps. They are usually plastic.
4. Use a screwdriver to remove the tap handles.
5. Use a wrench to remove the faucet.
6. Go underneath the sink and disconnect both water lines and unscrew the nuts that hold the taps into place.
7. Remove the entire fixture.
8. To install the new tap set, it’s basically the same proceedure in reverse. Follow the directions provided with your new ceramic taps.
DIY plumbing isn’t that difficult if you know what you are up against. When you understand your options you can choose the best repair and get busy.