Tap washers from the pound shop

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Peter L

Oct 2, 2008, 7:05:01 PM10/2/08
A few years ago I was keen on the bargains to be had in the pound
shops but some of their goods are rarely good value: for example,
anything with an abrasive in it, like glasspaper, usually wears out
or crumbles extremely fast.

Anyway, I'm now beginning to wonder about some rubber tap washers I

I bought mixed tap washers to add to some I already had. I also got
rubber or fibre versions of those usual flat-ring washers and added
those to my collection.

I can't get rid of just the pound shop rubber washers because they
are all mixed together with good rubber washers!

Is the rubber used in cheap tap washers usually naff and perishes
quickly. Or do they actually hold out well?


alt.consumers.uk-discounts.and.bargains and uk.d-i-y

The Medway Handyman

Oct 2, 2008, 7:44:24 PM10/2/08

I've bought kits of 'bargain' tap washers from Silverline & found them next
to useless. Far too hard to get onto the jumper assembly.

Dave - The Medway Handyman


Oct 3, 2008, 3:27:06 AM10/3/08

"Peter L" <pe...@yahoo.com> wrote in message

They are unlikely to be made from a WRAS approved material. That means you
have no idea what they may be leaching into your drinking water.

Colin Bignell

Message has been deleted


Oct 3, 2008, 2:36:42 PM10/3/08

"Peter L" <pe...@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> On Fri 03 Oct08 08:27, "nightjar" wrote:
> So I guess those tap washers of mine, both good and bad, have to go
> in the dustbin. :-(
> But wait a minute. How much of a difference does the Water
> Regulations Advisory Scheme (WRAS) make to what tap washers are used?
> I mean to say, were we at risk from dodgy drinking water before WRAS
> came into force?

How's your maths try this for a teaser- a tap washer weighing 5 grams which
may contain 5% of a plastisiser of which 10% may leach out over time is used
for twelve months during which 30 litres per day passed the washer how
concentrated would the solution be ? How much more would you consume if you
nibble your pen top while working this out?

Acceptable levels of pollutant in drinking water include 0.5 mg/l nitrites
: 50 mg/l nitrates 0.50 mg/l ammonium: 250 mg/l Chlorides
all hugely more and lets not get started on the pipes in houses built pre
1970. lead anybody?
and no the washers behave no differently than those from the hardware shop
and are just as easy to fit to penny on a stick type valves.

Andy Champ

Oct 3, 2008, 5:52:39 PM10/3/08
nightjar <cpb@ wrote:
> They are unlikely to be made from a WRAS approved material. That means you
> have no idea what they may be leaching into your drinking water.
OK, so I don't use them on the single direct-from-the-mains tap in the
house that I use for drinking water.



Matty F

Oct 3, 2008, 11:54:48 PM10/3/08
On Oct 3, 11:05 am, Peter L <pe...@yahoo.com> wrote:

> Is the rubber used in cheap tap washers usually naff and perishes
> quickly. Or do they actually hold out well?

I had problems with all types of tap washers for years. The fibre ones
worked well but wore out quickly. The rubber and plastic ones made a
dreadful noise when the tap was turned on.
I solved the problem by fitting a pressure reducing valve in the main
pipe to the house. I've not had to replace a washer since.

Appelation Controlee

Oct 4, 2008, 1:18:28 AM10/4/08

There's also a tendency, on the part of some, to screw down a tap so hard
that it takes two hands to turn it on again. This will shorten the life of
any washer.


Oct 4, 2008, 4:54:03 AM10/4/08

Yes agreed, it is typical FUD: Fear, uncertainty and doubt.


Oct 4, 2008, 5:25:42 AM10/4/08

"Appelation Controlee" <m...@privacy.net> wrote in message

I always ensure that the "H" & "C" markings are correctly oriented when the
tap is turned off enough. - Then lecture anyone who turns one too far.


Oct 4, 2008, 7:01:56 AM10/4/08
that's fine until they twist it past and try and go round again :-)
Kevin R
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The Medway Handyman

Oct 5, 2008, 6:16:30 AM10/5/08
Peter L wrote:
> On Sat 04 Oct08 06:18, Appelation Controlee <m...@privacy.net> wrote
> in <news:1jbnp84ibs8sa$.141cf2n40no3k$.d...@40tude.net>:
> Some people in my household have also been seen using that sort of
> force when closing our taps too!
> I was wondering if the rubber used in the cheapo washers is made
> of a coumpound so crap that they broke down readily (like the
> cheap abrasive products in pound shops).

I think its too hard, which encourages people to use more force to turn the
tap off. The ones I buy at my local 'proper' plumbing shop are much softer.


Oct 6, 2008, 12:00:23 PM10/6/08

"Peter L" <pe...@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> On Fri 03 Oct08 19:36, Derek
> <del.wattsdonts...@ntlworld.com> wrote in
> <news:ZCtFk.6209$iX3....@newsfe18.ams2>:

> Hello Derek. Phew that makes for a worry! I was looking for inf
> on the probability of that sort of level of dangerous pollution
> occurring in any tap washer.

It varies, there have been incidences of accidental pollution.

> I hope what you describe was not typical of washers sold in the UK
> in conventional plumbing shops until the Water Regs were
> introduced.
Wouldn't know myself, but UK used to install lead pipes for water.

> I also HOPE that the level of danger you describe is
> not likely in ultra-cheap imported washers. If you see what I
> mean.

I'm not sure just how well such things are tested, but as with anything
from the pound shops from sandpaper (50 sheets of stuff as useful for
as toilet paper) to tumblers and plastic tupperwear you assume it's safe.
For that reason I've never brought food from poundshops.

> It is that sort of thing I would like to know more about. Could
> you help with that? Thank you.

I've never thought of tape washers or even tumblers/glasses being safe
from contaminants, but if a reputable company in china can put dodgy
chemicals in baby milk, I won't be wiping my arse on toilet paper from
you never know what might be in the paper and destroying more than
just your klingons. :)

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