You’ve got a leaking drain. As far as problems, this is a pretty good problem to have. A leaking drain is fairly easy to fix, you just have to find out where the leak is located in the pipeline. Let’s look at some locations in the pipeline and see how a leaking drain can easily be fixed.
- The drain leaks right under the sink bowl. Keeping with the theme of easy fixes, this one is pretty darn easy. First, gain access to the drain pipes under the sink. These pipes may be P.V.C. or metal pipes. In either case, the pipes usually screw together with compression fittings. Just be careful unscrewing them as the trap, or “U” shaped fitting at the bottom of the drain line, will most likely contain water. Have a bucket handy to catch that water. Then, back to the business at hand, unscrew the actual drain at the bottom of the sink. The drain piece may need replaced or foreign material may simply be lodged under the drain piece.
- The leaking drain is leaking at the trap. No problem here. Just un-assemble the drain pipes as described above. Sometimes the trap will need to be replaced. New parts for your drain can be picked up at your local hardware store or nearest home improvement retailer. Many times the compression ring at the joint is split or cracked. This will need to be replaced. Again, look for foreign material that has become lodged under the compression ring.
- The leak is coming from one of the joints in the drain line. Here again, take apart the drain line. Look for foreign material lodged in between the compression ring and the pipe. Look for split or cracked compression rings.
- Sometimes the drain stop mechanism is broken or has eroded. Once again, this is pretty simple stuff. Simply disassemble the drain and the problem should be very evident. Inspect all of the moving parts of the system for erosion, breaks or foreign matter.
A leaking drain is typically very easy to fix. Keep in mind that many home improvement retailers and hardware stores offer quick fixes on their shelves for leaking drains. These normally don’t work that well and may actually cause new problems down the road. New drain parts are easily obtainable and pretty inexpensive. Go the distance and do it right. Just get the parts and fix it right.