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Author: superF00Lish Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 389115  
Subject: Seized up taps? Date: 24/10/2009 16:50
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I have a couple of dripping cold taps, both of the same type, but I cannot remove the "head gear" to replace the washer!

I have removed the handle and the shroud on one of the taps, and have got the correct sized spanner to remove the head gear, but I cannot shift it.

On the other tap, and on another couple of identical taps, I cannot even remove the 'shroud'.

The taps are very similar to the ones shown third-down in the following link, but there is nowhere to grip the shroud on ours; they are completely smooth chrome, unlike the one in the picture which could be removed with a spanner if it was too tight.

http://www.ultimatehandyman.co.uk/taps/replacing_tap_washer....

Does anyone have any ideas as to how I might release the head gear, and the shrouds on the other taps? They are Bristan Regency taps if that helps.

Thanks.
SF
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Author: superF00Lish Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296116 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 24/10/2009 17:08
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I hadn't seen the video at the bottom of the page. I have got a couple of ideas of it, and will try them first.

1) WD-40
2) Make a wooden bracket to provide leverage on the tap.

SF

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Author: captbrian Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296118 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 24/10/2009 17:53
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The threads are seized up with lime-scale. Introduce lime-scale remover liqid wherever you can, from plumber supply places for de-scaling radiators etc. Leave overnight. the whole thing should then almost fall apart for you. If not, then wind thin cord many times anticlockwise around the shroud and end up with it tied to a 12" bar (screwdriver handle maybe ) close to one end. resting the short end against the shroud, use the other as a lever to tighten the cord and turn the shroud anticlockwise so as to unscrew it.

Bryan

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Author: foolsstop Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296121 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 24/10/2009 18:45
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or a strap wrench/top opener

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Author: loir Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296122 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 24/10/2009 18:45
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I have a strap wrench tool which I use on taps.
http://www.force4.co.uk/1863/Boa-Rubber-Strap-Wrench.html

It has a reinforced rubber strap that goes round the target and back into a slot. When you lever with it the strap is locked into the slot.

Just the thing for round smooth things like tap shrouds. It is also good at holding the tap safely while a spanner is turning the inside bits.

Loir

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Author: superF00Lish Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296136 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 08:33
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Thanks for the lime-scale idea; I we have limescale remover, so I'll give that a go.

Thanks also for the lever, and strap wrench ideas.

They're all things I can try before having to call someone in to do it for me!

SF

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Author: RBCRBC Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296138 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 09:30
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The other thing to assist is to wrap a towel soaked in hot water around the outter metal parts to expand it slightly and a similar wet towel after a time in the freezer around the inner metal parts to contract those metal parts.

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Author: Terrapin1 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296140 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 09:57
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Pour boiling water over them- that has worked for me in the past. I hope these are old Bristan taps, I have just installed some in my bathroom.

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Author: Mike4 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296158 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 13:43
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Does anyone have any ideas as to how I might release the head gear, and the shrouds on the other taps? They are Bristan Regency taps if that helps.


My advice is forget it. Mending that style of tap is a hiding to nothing once they get old enough to start dripping. Even if you succeed in dismantling them and fixing the drip something else will go wrong soon. It's FAR quicker and therefore cost-effective to remove them and fit a new pair as that style of tap costs peanuts these days and it's a dead easy job.

But if you insist, you can remove the shroud by gripping it at the top. The thread is at the base and the metal is so thin that any gripping you do at the base squeezes and distorts the shroud and grips the thread tighter. Grip at the top and it will prolly turn with ease.

Getting the headworks out of the body needs an accurately fitting spanner and something to use as a lever. Put the spanner on parallel to the spout and use your lever vertically between spout and spanner. After you have tried all this and failed, nip out and buy new taps from Wickes like I said. Fit them in about twenty minutes ;-)


Cheers!
M4

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Author: superF00Lish Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296163 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 14:12
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My advice is forget it. Mending that style of tap is a hiding to nothing once they get old enough to start dripping.

They're in a nine year-old house; is that too 'old'? I was expecting that I'd just have to do a washer replacement.

Thanks.
SF

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Author: Mike4 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296167 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 14:27
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They're in a nine year-old house; is that too 'old'? I was expecting that I'd just have to do a washer replacement.


Yes nine years is a good life for modern taps of that style. They are made completely differently inside from old style taps which were designed to be repaired and maintained. The terminal problem they suffer from is the washer carrier is on the end of a hexagonal brass shaft that moves up and down in a hexagonal housing. As it wears it begins to jam and no amount of new lubrication stops the jamming for any decent length of time.

The problem initially presents as refusal of the hot tap to fully turn off and the user assumes a new washer is required. Is it the hot tap you are trying to dismantle? I bet it is!

;-)

Cheers!
M4

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Author: superF00Lish Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296171 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 15:28
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The problem initially presents as refusal of the hot tap to fully turn off and the user assumes a new washer is required. Is it the hot tap you are trying to dismantle? I bet it is!

Actually, it's not; good job we didn't shake hands on that bet! I have two dripping cold taps and another that's getting stiff. The dripping can be stopped if I turn them off, but I'm the only person in the house who is strong enough.

If you still think it's 'terminal', what sort of taps would you recommend? We are unlikely to be in this house for more than another three years.

Thanks for taking the trouble to respond to my queries.

SF

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Author: Mike4 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296177 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 16:28
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The dripping can be stopped if I turn them off, but I'm the only person in the house who is strong enough.


Proably is washers then. The tap seats will probably need re-grinding too if the dripping can be stopped by turning them off hard.


If you still think it's 'terminal',

Well most problems can be repaired if you are actually relishing the challenge but significant time and money (e.g. buying a good quality tap reseating tool that actually works as opposed to a ten quid one from Monument) can be expended. Three pairs of new taps can be had for less than the price of a decent tap seat re-cutter so is it worth the effort when basin taps are quicker and easier to change than to repair?


what sort of taps would you recommend? We are unlikely to be in this house for more than another three years.

Cheap ones then! e.g: http://www.plumbworld.co.uk/victoriana-chrome-bath-taps-1913... And that's only after a very brief search.

For better quality taps it's hard to beat Ideal Standard as a brand to seek out but they will be four times the price.

Cheers!
M4

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Author: LilMsRonnie Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 296200 of 389115
Subject: Re: Seized up taps? Date: 25/10/2009 19:35
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Hi SF,

If you email Bristan (contact details on their website www.bristan.com ), they may send you some innards free of charge. They guarantee their products for 5 years (I know you have had your taps longer than that), but I have found that they can be surprisingly good with these matters.

Don't bother phoning them though - you'll never get through!

Ronnie

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