Rusty faucets present more than simply a danger to the plumbing in your home. Pitted surfaces, such as those formed by rust deposits, make great places for bacteria and mold to hide and reproduce. It's vital to keep faucets cleaned on both the inside and out to ensure that they're safe for the family's use.
Corrosion on a faucet can cause illness or injury, and should be prevented. Tetanus and poisoning are only the start of the dangers.
Corrosion and rust don't always come from water damage. Even oxygen in the air can cause delicate faucet components to corrode and become vulnerable.
External corrosion is easily identifiable. The open pits of cracks seen in the housing of many faucets are a perfect example. Interior corrosion is a bit harder to find. Removing the faucet handle to expose the inner workings is the only way to positively diagnose internal corrosion.
Exposure to acid rain and even clean water can cause corrosion in just a matter of a few months, while oxygen exposure can take years. At the end of every season, it's wise to check both indoor and outdoor faucets.
Corrosion of faucets can be prevented by purchasing faucets which are plated with either zinc or cadmium. These metals are corrosion resistant and can last years before showing any wear at all. Faucets which aren't plated should be patted dry after each use.
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