Service Agent Q&A with George Loredo, service manager, PROTEX Restaurant Services Inc., Corpus Christi, Texas 

FE&S: What do operators need to be aware of in terms of maintaining faucets?

GL: Generally, most faucets don’t require a lot of maintenance other than keeping the exterior clean. Any other tasks should be done by a plumber or professional service agent.

FE&S: Are there signs that a faucet needs servicing?

GL: If the faucet is leaking or squeaking, it needs to be checked out. This shouldn’t happen if it’s being used correctly. There also may be a constant drip at the end of the faucet or by the handles, which may be caused by broken seals or seats of the cartridge.

FE&S: What causes restriction of water flow?

GL: This may be caused by a dirty screen filter, which catches sediment from water heaters or city piping. If this is clogged, it will restrict water flow. The filters easily unscrew and can be cleaned by operators. This should be done regularly or when water flow is reduced.

FE&S: What are some common abuses of commercial faucets?

GL: Inappropriate use includes swinging the goosenecks roughly or bearing down on the faucet handles. Slide or swivel spigots also get abused often.

FE&S: What is the typical service life of a faucet used in restaurants?

GL: The service life is typically a year without a lot of abuse. This is when maintenance is typically needed. Water quality plays a role in how long the faucet will last. Hard water or a lot of minerals will compromise its integrity over time.

FE&S: What are signs that a faucet needs replacing?

GL: Replacement is needed when the faucet shows signs of obvious corrosion. When this happens, the metal will start to bubble. By that time, the inside and cartridges may be impacted, compromising the flow and other aspects of the faucet.