Mixer taps can update the look of your kitchen, bathroom or laundry to a more modern finish as well as ease the operation of a tap. Other than simplifying the function of turning your tap on and off and the fact that you will have one less knob to use, there are other considerations to be made before switching from pillar taps to mixer taps.
Because pillar taps has two separate faucets of water flow, one for hot water and the other cold, they can effectively be used in households with a low-pressure water system. However, mixer taps operate through a single faucet and controlled by one lever and a reduction in water pressure will be very noticeable in buildings with low-pressure water systems.
A brief guide on how to determine what kind of water system your building uses would be whether the building utilises a mains cold and combination boiler or not. If your building does have this requirement, you will have enough water pressure for a mixer tap. Alternatively, if your building has a hot water cylinder with cold water fed from a tank stored in a high position, then that too would provide enough water pressure for a mixer tap.
Although, if converting from a two-faucet to single-faucet look is only what you are aiming for, you can install a mono mixer tap where there are two tap handles for hot and cold water flow, but use only the one faucet.
The Foundation Unit
For a more coherent aesthetic, it would be favourable for your mixer unit to cover the two holes of your original taps. However, you may need to replace an existing ceramic basin, as most mixer taps will not be able to cover the two holes from your previous tap set. Moreover, the new mixer fitting may not be able to fit into original central spout hole, thus may throw the look of your basin off its centre. You can however fit stainless covers on to the unused holes of the original basin if you are on a tighter budget.
For taps that are attached to the wall, there are mixers that suit existing tapware with standard sized breach of components; this being more common for kitchen taps. However for showers, it is most likely that ripping out the tiles would be necessary to expose the piping required to install wall mixer taps and for the clipping of pipework required to stop water hammering.
Making the switch from traditional pillar taps to mixer taps is not always a straightforward DIY task. We recommend you consult a plumber before commencing any work to avoid unnecessary damages to your tap system. If you need any more advice on the types of mixer taps available and would suit your room, check out our varieties here or ask one of our friendly staff at Pheonix Tapware Australia.