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Sinks, like tubs, come in two types: compression or washerless. Compression faucets work by turning. As you turn the handle counterclockwise, the handle lifts and water flows through the pipes. When you turn the handle clockwise, the handle closes. When the valve closes, it stops the water from flowing.

A washerless faucet works by moving the handle. As the handle lifts, the ball, ceramic disk, or cartridge lifts, opening a channel for water. When the ball is tight to the faucet body, water flow is stopped.

If you have a leak coming from the handles of the faucet, you will need a wrench, a screwdriver, and several new parts. Here are directions for fixing both.

1. Compression faucet

A compression faucet is made up of a cap, screw, handle, locknut, stem, o-ring, seat washer, screw, and valve seat. If you place the parts in this order and connect them, they will make a handle that will turn your water on and off.

If you find a leak, start taking the handle apart, starting with the cap. When you work your way to the valve seat, check each washer, o-ring, and screw. If any are worn or rusted, replace them. Then, reassemble the handle. Make sure the screws and locknuts are tight. Once you replace all the items, you should not encounter any leaks.

2. Washerless faucet

There are three types of washerless faucets: the ball faucet, the ceramic disk faucet, and the cartridge faucet. All are made with similar parts and are fixed the same way.

To fix a drip, start by removing the faucet from the tops. Most are made of a handle, escutcheon ring, or adjusting ring; a cam, cam washer, inlet seal, spring, ball, or disc cylinder; and the seat or water inlets. Again, work your way to the faucet body, looking for worn or rusted parts. If you find any, replace them. Then reassemble the handle. Make sure the screws are tight. Once you replace all the items, you should not encounter any leaks.