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Advantages and Disadvantages of Ceramic Disc Taps

Faucets are leaking. It is inevitable, like death and taxes.

Traditional faucet sealing with screwed rubber ring

the end of a metal tube. Sooner or later the rubber will

will go hard, split or just wear out and not

longest seal. Then the water is filtered and the tap starts.

drip. If left alone, the problem worsens as the water

wears the valve seat. Then you will have to

Re-polish the valve seat (Own a valve seat grinder?

Who would do it?) Or replace the faucet. Tedious in any case.

But it doesn’t have to happen. Many faucets now use ceramic discs.

Method of operation

Instead of creating a seal by forcing a rubber washer into

at the end of the water supply pipe, they use two ceramic discs

each with matching slots on them. These are carried out on the

end of the water supply pipe. Lower disc does not move

while the upper disc rotates on the lower one by the

touch the head. Water will only flow when the top and bottom

the slots match.


There are a number of benefits to this arrangement. The more

obvious is that ceramic discs are much harder than rubber ones

and much more resistant to erosion by water seepage. So

they have a much longer life before needing replacement.

Also, because water flows between the two discs,

the discs do not erode the metal of the valve. Also because

from the way the discs are arranged, the taps continue completely with

just a quarter turn and the tap only needs light pressure

to operate. This light action has the advantage that

are easy to operate with the back of your hand if your hands

They are dirty and for people with restricted movement.

Where they are used

Ease of use and long life mean that most of the

Quality sink mixer taps are made from ceramic discs

for a while, but sink faucets with ceramic discs are

surprisingly less common. The more a touch is used, the more

The use of ceramic disc technology becomes attractive. This

is doubly true in hard water areas, which can be killers in

traditional taps.


Everything has its downside and ceramic has its drawbacks.

disc taps. They eventually wear out and are more

expensive than old style faucets and not suitable for very

low water pressure. Unusually, many of the manufacturers

seem to use standard sizes, so getting a replacement is

often straightforward. Because sink taps can be

delivered or not, one cannot always be sure which way

turn on each faucet, this can be annoying! Lastly, unlike

traditional style faucets, which take several turns to be

in its entirety, you can easily turn the water flow on much more than

did you mean. The unexpectedly vigorous flow of water and splashing

can make water go everywhere, even above your

clothing. Not well!

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