FAQ – Difference Between Mixer & Spindle Type Taps

  • 26 April 2021
  • Blog

Leaking taps are one of our most common enquires. With an estimated 10 million taps in just Victoria alone, it is easy to see why!

In domestic homes, there are usually 2 main sorts of taps. One is called a mixer tap and the other is called a spindle type tap.

Mixer taps

Mixer taps are those with one lever – it adjusts the temperature and the flow of the water. These taps are fairly new and only really came into fashion in the late 90s and early 2000s. The real advantage of these taps is that they are compact, look great and works smoothly for the elderly or those who have trouble gripping and turning. In short, the tap consists of two ceramic discs with holes and they slide over one another to allow hot and cold water to mix inside the tap body before exiting through the spout.

The downside of these taps is that they can be difficult to repair. There is usually one working part in the mixer called the cartridge, which is the part that needs to be replaced if the mixer begins to leak. Unfortunately, this part is not universal and each manufacturer has their own specific spare parts for their own mixers. If the mixer company no longer makes the mixer, or the company no longer exists, finding the spare part can sometimes be near to impossible. When this happens, we would recommend for our customers to purchase a new mixer as it often works out significantly cheaper.

Spindle type tapware

The easy way to identify if you have spindle type tapware or not, is to see if there is one handle for cold water and one handle for hot water.

There are only two types of spindle tapware. You have one which has tap washers and the other which has a ceramic disc (known as quarter turn taps). The way in which you can tell what sort you have is through the ceramic disc taps, as they only turn a quarter of the way between on and off.

If you have a leaking spindle tap, it is usually a fairly easy job to rectify. Installing a new tap washer and conducting a service of all the taps internals is sufficient. However, in the case where you have a ceramic disc, the entire spindle needs to be replaced as there are no spare parts available for them.

If you are having difficulty diagnosing or fixing your leaking taps at home, give our local Melbourne plumbers a call at 0448 140 517. We’ve got your plumbing covered!

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