Water Not Coming Out Of Your Tap? Here’s Why

One of the most annoying things a homeowner can experience is the water not coming out of your tap. It’s a very quick way to ruin your day, or at the very least, inconvenience you. Taps have a lot of bits and bobs, which means a lot of things could have gone wrong. In fact, the problem may not even lie in the tap, though that’s not the best thing to hear.

Among other causes for water not coming out of the tap, the most common causes are a total outage of water from the supplier, failed water main, and more.

There’s a lot of ground to cover, so let’s not waste time. You’ve gotta get your water back!

What to Check With Water Not Coming Out of Tap

We’ll start with the obvious first steps and move onto more specific potential causes in time. For now, we begin with the big ones. First up, check your other faucets.

While it’s possible that the water was disrupted elsewhere, the fastest way to figure out if it’s the tap or elsewhere is to test other taps. If you have water coming out of multiple other taps, it’s that specific one that’s out. If it’s multiple taps that are out, you can figure out the scope of the issue and it may lead you to one of the causes farther down.

Additionally, check if you have hot water. If it’s just hot water that’s not working, the source is likely your water heater. While the cause of your water heater’s failure will likely vary, at least it’s identified. You can flush the water heater and try to let it reheat. If that fails, it’s likely time to call in the professionals to diagnose the problem.

The next step is to check with your neighbours.

Do the Neighbours Have Water?

If you have no running water, your next stop should be your neighbours. It’s possible that your supplier has turned off service. It could be due to damage somewhere along the way, maintenance, or a billing mishap – but if it happened, you need to know.

While you can call the supplier if you can’t get ahold of a neighbour, it’s often faster to walk next door and knock than to wait on hold. If your neighbour’s taps are off, it’s likely from something out of your control. Be sure to contact your supplier and find out what to do next, and when they’ll be returning service.

Water Main

This is another good thing to check early on. Make sure your water main didn’t get bumped by accident. The number of times I’ve thought I lost water, only to realise the main valve just got bumped is… not that many, but more than I’d like to admit.

If the water main is closed, open it. If not, move down the list.

Look for Water Damage

Hopefully, it hasn’t progressed very far, but a potential cause for a loss of running water or water pressure is a leak. This will usually be rather noticeable, though it depends on where the leak is. Begin by looking around your home (following the plumbing) for dark or damp spots, puddles, and the like.

After that, go to the water meter on your home. Record what it’s displaying, and have a partner or friend turn off the water at the main. Wait an hour and return to the meter. If the number displayed has changed, you have a leak somewhere and need to contact a professional immediately. If the number hasn’t changed, good news! You don’t have a leak.

Clogs & Rust

These are both equally possible causes of a failure of your running water. If there’s still no water coming out of your tap after checking all of the above, it’s time to consider a clog or rust. The latter will likely need to be resolved by a plumber, while the former can usually be resolved by using drain cleaner.

Alternatively, you can use a solution of equal parts baking soda and vinegar. If that fails (but seems to make a difference), follow it up with a pot of boiled water, and another vinegar and baking soda treatment. Allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes, flush again with boiled water, and it could very well resolve the issue.

What Season is It?

Specifically, is it winter? If so – how cold is it right now? If it’s freezing, especially if it has been for a while, it’s entirely possible that your pipes are frozen. Use a hair dryer or heat gun to thaw frozen pipes, and remember to keep your tap dripping when expecting freezing temperatures.

Do not use boiling water to thaw frozen pipes. This can cause a pipe to burst and will not be as effective as using a heat gun or blow dryer.

And if you regularly see freezing temperatures, maybe consider insulating your pipes?

You Didn’t Install It, Did You?

Nobody likes to admit it, but if you did a DIY job recently that involved plumbing, it’s possible that you did something along the line that affected your tap. While this isn’t incredibly likely, it’s worth mentioning. Should you suspect this is the issue, please – hire a pro. Don’t try to fix something you created unless you’re certain you can do it.

Final Thoughts

Plumbing is a tricky business. If suddenly water is not coming out of your tap, there are a lot of potential causes. It could be something as small as a bumped valve or pre-scheduled maintenance. It could also be something as bad as a burst or frozen pipe. While those aren’t the most ideal answers, they’re definitely possibilities.

It’s always best to start small with your troubleshooting. Check your other taps, speak with neighbours, and check your water meter and main. It’s entirely possible that there’s a small, easy fix to something you’re likely building up in your head. There’s no use in anxiety (though I’m not one to talk), only action. Check the above potential causes, and it’ll be resolved in no time.

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About the Author Harry Thompson

Involved in home renovations throughout his life, Harry is an expert in everything to do with home and garden DIY. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and tending to his garden.