If you are updating the faucet fixtures in your home, make sure you are installing the right type of faucet for each room in your home.
Faucets may look the same when you just glance at them, since they all are designed to provide you with water. However, there are actually four different types of valves used inside residential faucets to control water flow and temperature. The following information will help you decide which valve type is right for your needs.
Ceramic Disc Valve
A ceramic disc valve uses two rotating ceramic discs that, when aligned together, control the water flow and temperature. Ceramic disc faucets allow great control over water flow and temperature, offering very fine-tuned precision.
If you are looking for a faucet valve that is practically maintenance free, look no further than the ceramic disc valve. The material is extremely durable and doesn't wear out, even under challenging water conditions, such as hard water and mineral buildup.
In addition to being durable, ceramic disc valves rarely leak. If a leak does occur, it is usually because of a damaged inlet or outlet seal, which are easy to replace.
The only real downside to ceramic disc valves is that they tend to be on the pricier end of the faucet spectrum, due to how durable and long lasting they are.
Cartridge valves are extremely common in all sorts of faucet configurations. The main component on a cartridge valve is the small brass or plastic cylinder that controls the temperature and water flow rates through a network of small channels. An O-ring is used to seal up the cartridge and prevent leaks.
Cartridge valves are extremely popular because they can be used on both two-handled and single-handled faucets. They are also easy to fix. If your tap starts leaking, it is really simple to swap out the cylinder, O-ring, and/or spring to get the tap working correctly again.
The ball valve is exclusively used in single-handed faucets. The main component of a ball valve is a steel ball, which has a series of different grooves and holes on it.
When you turn the handle on a single-handed faucet, the holes align and control the flow of hot and cold water to create the desired temperature. Additional grooves and holes control the pressure of the water.
The entire internal setup of a ball valve is pretty complicated and includes numerous small parts. When these small parts wear out, you may have to replace the entire component. Ball valves also do not hold up well to mineral deposits.
The most inexpensive type of faucet valve is the compression valve. The compression valve is economically priced because it contains few parts and has a simple configuration.
A compression valve has two major parts: the screw stem and the rubber compression washer. Raising and lowering the screw stem lifts and lowers the rubber washer over the water inlet. This allows water to flow through the faucet.
The one downside to this simple configuration is that the rubber washer easily wears down, which can lead to a leaking faucet. Luckily, it is easy to take the faucet apart and swap in a new rubber washer.
If you are looking for an affordable valve system, the compression valve and the cartridge valve are two classic faucet valve systems. For single-handed faucets, the ball valve system is an affordable option. For the most long lasting and leak free valve system, a ceramic disc valve provides a high level of value.
If you are planning on upgrading the faucets in your home, give us a call at Randy's Rooter & Plumbing, LLC. We'll help you pick out the right faucets at the right price.