This guide is available in English here. Esta guía está disponible en español aquí. Ce guide est disponible en anglais ici. Dieser Leitfaden ist hier in deutscher Sprache erhältlich. Questa guida è disponibile in italiano qui.

One of the most commonly asked features from our customers is the longevity of our taps. But instead of replacing them, you can easily revive them by cleaning and descaling the internal cartridges. This simple to use method is inexpensive and chemical free. As part of our series on eco-friendly cleaning, House of ENKI explores how to fix up a tap-cartridge and restore premium water flow to your home.

See also our guide to Shiny Sinks and Basins - for that all round surface-area clean.

Why should I descale and clean my tap cartridges?

Keeping your tap cartridges clean, will prevent the build-up of limescale in the tap and the overall unit. When too much limescale is present, it can affect the flow of water. This makes it harder and more cumbersome to wash! Naturally leaving many people frustrated and quick to look for new bathroom fittings, but this needn't be the case. With a little effort, you can free up your cartridges and save the cash for something extra special.

Isn't just a surface clean enough?

A good question. Whilst you may save some time cleaning a bathroom with just a surface based clean. Going over things with a quick wipe around the edges and neglecting your cartridges will stop the taps from performing at their best. This quick and easy solution makes it simple to rectify and keeps the water flowing for longer as well as preserving much-needed shine and finish.

 

What you will need

To work on this eco-friendly solution, you will only need a little practical knowledge and a few tools. Depending on the type of tap you have installed you will need an adjustable spanner, a flathead screwdriver and a crosshead screwdriver. During this task, we are looking to dismantle the tap and separate the cartridge.

You should also have to hand an old toothbrush (you won't be using this one for your teeth again), vinegar, a cleaning cloth and a bowl of water. Be certain to eliminate the mess, by filling the bowl before you start or using a separate sink or basin or filling a kettle ahead of time and pouring this into the bowl just before you start.

Getting Cleaning

 

Step 1: - In your bowl mix together warm water and a cup of vinegar.

Step 2: - Turn off your hot and cold water in the mains, using your boiler or isolation valves. Open the tap to allow any excess water inside to drain away, taking care to mop up any spillages to prevent unwanted leaks or stains on walls, floors and surfaces.

Step 3: -  Remove the tap head using your screwdriver, and take out cartridge retaining nut below it. You can do this by using your spanner to gently lift the cartridge away from the body of the tap. Be careful to not squeeze or apply too much pressure.

Step 4: - Soak the cartridge in the water and vinegar mix, 10-15 minutes should do the trick. If, however when you take it out, there's still some limescale on it, soak it a little longer - after all, it will provide better results. You can also add a little more vinegar to the mixture or soak a cloth in it and wrap it tightly around the cartridge. If applying this method, leave the cartridge for an hour or two, to allow it to remove the limescale.  You can use the time whilst you wait to browse our latest collections here.

Step 5: - Gently clean around the filters and orifices within the tap using your toothbrush After this, wipe it clean with a cloth ensuring it is dry throughout to prevent corrosion.

Step 6: - Using the toothbrush, brush over the cartridge within the mixture or cloth. Once done, remove this from the solution.

Step 7: - Check the washers and ring seals are clean and limescale free. As before you can spruce these up using the toothbrush and cloth.

Step 8: - Return the cartridge back into the tap, in the same way, you took it out, covering it with the cartridge retaining nut.

Step 9: - Once you have replaced the cover, screw the tap head on using your screwdriver. Make sure not to overtighten this, as it can damage your tap and its internal mechanics.

Step 10: - Turn on your water and ensure there are no leaks. Your water should now be flowing freely, with less limescale blocking it up.

This simple guide should hopefully help you save money and time, without the need for replacements or calling out professional help. Be certain to repeat the process every month or so for the best results, especially in areas with naturally hard-water. Still not right? Visit our collection of Cartridges below:

Do you have any top tips for a clean, shiny bathroom? Or are you a pro at keeping a showhome style kitchen? Maybe you have an unanswered cleaning question?  Let us know, in the comments section below.

At House of ENKI, we're here to help to design the luxury kitchen and bathrooms of your dreams.