Drip, drip, drip. If this is a sound that you have grown accustomed to in your home, it's time to repair your leaky faucet. In addition to being an audible nuisance, a leaking faucet wastes water and causes your monthly water bill to rise.

Most leaks can be repaired fairly easily with a little time and the right tools.

Tighten the adjusting ring.

Older faucets are equipped with an adjusting ring. This component (which resembles a rubber washer) helps regulate the flow of water through your faucet and can also contribute to the ease with which the faucet's handles can be used.

Over time, the adjusting ring can come loose. This allows water to escape from your faucet and begin pooling near the base of the fixture. The adjusting ring can be tightened with a pair of needle-nose pliers to eliminate leaks near the handles of your faucet.

Replace the seat and springs.

A valve sits at the base of your faucet's stem. This valve is regulated by a rubber plug referred to as a seat. A spring sits beneath the seat and helps aid in proper function. Since the seat is made from rubber, it can deteriorate over time.

A damaged seat will not seal off the valve connecting your faucet's handles to the plumbing pipes properly. This allows water to move through the valve even when the handles of your faucet are in the "off" position. Replacing the seat and springs with a new set can eliminate any water leaking from your faucet as a result of poor valve closure.

It's important to note that if you have a dual-handle faucet, the fixture will have two valves serviced by a seat and spring. Replace both simultaneously for maximum protection against leaks in the future.

Replace the O-ring in your faucet.

Modern faucets have a washer that sits near the base of the fixture. This washer, known as an O-ring, is responsible for creating a watertight seal around the base of your faucet. The O-ring can deteriorate or become damaged with extensive use.

A compromised O-ring allows water to seep out of the faucet and pool on the surrounding countertop. Remove the faucet housing and replace the damaged O-ring with a new one to eliminate troublesome leaks from wasting water and money in the future.

Addressing a leaking faucet is something that homeowners should prioritize. If you don't want to tackle this project yourself, contact a professional or look up "fix leaky faucet" on your internet search engine. Leaking faucets can be costly, so eliminating leaks quickly is the best way to protect against high water bills and potential water damage.