As a faucet that carries water at home, it is related to health, but it is often confused when buying it and does not know how to choose. This article introduces you to the three main components of the faucet and the purchasing strategy. When purchasing the faucet, you can choose it purposefully and buy a reassuring high-quality faucet.
The three most basic elements of a faucet: body, plating and valve core
/01 Body material
The main body is the torso part of the faucet, and the water flows in and out of the body all the time, so the material is more important and fundamentally determines the water quality.
Copper alloy faucet
Copper alloy is currently recognized as the most suitable main material for home use, and the mainstream is brass. On the one hand, because copper has good machinability, fluidity and formability, on the other hand, because copper ions have a bactericidal effect, it can kill super bacteria such as MRSA within 30 minutes and prevent the bacteria from producing antibodies, making the copper faucet The inner wall does not breed bacteria and becomes the most suitable carrier for “water”.
According to the different proportion of copper content in copper alloys, copper alloy materials can be divided into 52, 55, 59 and 62 copper. Among them, 59 copper is the recognized copper-to-gold ratio. The copper metal content is 58%-60%, the lead metal content is 0.8%-2%, and the other element content is about 2%. The remaining metal is basically zinc.
Because lead metal will precipitate when water enters the faucet and pollute the water source. If the lead content is too high, it is harmful to the human body. Therefore, some brand faucets use low-lead copper, that is, the lead content is less than 0.1%. In view of the fact that it is difficult for general consumers to judge the lead content, it is recommended to choose large brands with obvious signs and use low-lead copper.
Zinc alloy is an alloy based on zinc and added with aluminum, copper, magnesium, cadmium, lead, titanium and other elements. Zinc alloy is easily corroded in water. After being corroded, the metal will be mixed into the water and cause harm to the human body. The biggest advantage is probably the low price.
Some manufacturers use zinc alloys to pretend to be copper alloys for sale. Consumers are not easy to distinguish from the appearance. Therefore, it is recommended to buy products with relevant certifications from major brands.
The main components of steel are iron and carbon. Ordinary carbon steel is easy to oxidize (rust). Metals such as chromium and nickel are added to carbon steel to make the steel corrosion resistant. Therefore, the most important factor affecting the corrosion resistance of stainless steel is the content of chromium.
Stainless steel has the advantages of acid resistance, alkali resistance, corrosion resistance, and no release of harmful substances (lead), but compared to copper, it has one of the biggest drawbacks, that is, it does not have antibacterial function.
If the budget is sufficient, choose low-lead copper products. If you cannot identify whether it is low-lead copper, choose products with obvious logos from big brands, such as imported brands such as Moen and Hansgrohe, and domestic brands such as Jiumu and Hengjie. For example, Moen started with a leader, and all his products use low-lead copper, which is more reassuring in terms of water quality.
If you have a small budget, you can choose either brass faucet or stainless steel. Both prices will be cheaper. However, relatively, there will be some problems. In particular, even if you choose the leading products of these two materials, you must choose the products of the regular brand. After all, it is about your own health. Don’t be greedy for cheap.
The faucet is used in a humid environment, and its surface requires a good finish. Now the common surface treatment on the market is electroplating, mainly including chrome plating, nickel plating, titanium gold plating, etc. In addition, some baking paint, porcelain, imitation gold electrophoretic paint, etc. are relatively rare The way.
The most common faucet coating for chromium plating, chromium is a white metal with a slightly blue color. It has high hardness and wear resistance. Its hardness is even higher than the hardest quenched steel, second only to diamond.
Chromium is not easy to change in a humid environment and can maintain the surface gloss for a long time. The appearance of silver is quite high, and the chrome-plated faucet is more popular with consumers.
Metallic nickel can quickly form a very thin passivation film on the surface of the faucet, which can resist the corrosion of the atmosphere and certain acids, has excellent corrosion resistance and stability, and can resist the corrosion of water vapor and certain acids, so the nickel layer High stability in humid environments.
Titanium alloys are made by adding aluminum and tin elements or aluminum and vanadium elements to titanium. Electroplated titanium gold has the advantages of high strength, low density, strong toughness and good corrosion resistance. The surface of the titanium-plated gold faucet is as smooth as a mirror, and its golden luster looks elegant and rich and very decorative. However, the process of plating titanium gold is complicated, and impurities are easily absorbed during thermal processing, so the yield is lower and the cost is higher.
Baking paint is to put primer and top paint on the faucet substrate. Each time the paint is applied, it is sent to a dust-free constant temperature paint room for electric heating or far-infrared high temperature baking to solidify the paint layer.
The surface of the lacquered faucet is smooth and shiny, which can present a piano-like visual texture, making the whole product look very high-grade. However, compared with other surface treatment methods, lacquered faucets are more prone to surface peeling, and are not as durable as traditional chrome-plated faucets. There are few faucets that use paint
This kind of treatment will make the surface of the faucet visually rough, but it feels quite delicate, showing a restrained beauty. The wire drawing process is mainly relying on mechanical friction, which can produce several common textures such as straight, chaotic, thread, corrugated, swirl and intermittent silk patterns on the surface of the faucet, and can create matte, mirror, three-dimensional, relief, Satin and other effects.
Appropriate surface treatment can make the overall shape of the faucet richer and fuller. Choosing the right faucet can also become the finishing touch to the bathroom collocation, making every opening is pleasing to the eye.
There are usually multiple coatings, and some cheap faucets only have one coating on the surface. Generally, each brand will have its own coating. It is not that the thicker the better, but just right. If the coating is too thin, it will not be able to prevent corrosion. If the coating is too thick, it will be particularly easy to peel off.
Copper + nickel + chromium is more suitable. Copper can provide excellent adhesion, nickel makes the coating have excellent corrosion resistance, and chromium makes the surface bright and flawless, and is hard and scratch-resistant, further improving corrosion resistance. In addition, the faucets that pass the 24-hour professional salt spray test will be more assured in terms of corrosion resistance. For example, the products of major brands such as Moen and Kohler have passed these tests and have very clear signs.
The valve core is a valve part that realizes the basic functions of direction control, pressure control or flow control by virtue of the rotation of the valve stem. The water flow enters the main body of the faucet through the valve core and finally leaves the water outlet. The number of times the faucet in the home is turned on and off every day, it can be seen that the quality of the valve core is also very important to the faucet.
Ceramic disc valve core
The ceramic disc valve core has less water pollution, good wear resistance, and good sealing performance. Many high-quality faucets use ceramic disc valve cores. Relatively speaking, some imported ceramic chips have better sealing performance, stable physical properties, wear resistance and long service life.
Stainless steel ball valve core
The biggest advantage of stainless steel ball is that it has a larger adjustable angle for rotation and is not easily affected by water quality. It is more practical to choose this type in areas with poor water quality. However, stainless steel has worse wear resistance than ceramic chips. If it is used for a long time, water leakage is prone to occur.
Roller spools belong to the old-fashioned spools. No matter in terms of price, water pollution or life span, they are not as good as ceramics and have been phased out. There are very few spools of this material on the market.
Part2 How to buy
After understanding the most important parts of the faucet, let’s take a look at the precautions when purchasing.
/01 Look at the weight
A faucet made of brass has a certain weight, so you can make a preliminary judgment by weighing the weight of the faucet. However, there are many manufacturers that can increase the weight of low-quality faucets through some methods. Therefore, here is a commonplace saying that for consumers who can’t distinguish the material, try to choose the leading brand of the big brand. This is the easiest. Screening mechanism.
/02 Look at the surface
Under the condition of sufficient light, carefully observe the electroplating surface of the faucet. A good electroplating looks like a mirror, without any oxidation spots, burn marks, no pores, no blistering, and no plating leakage. There is no burr to the touch. After pressing the faucet with your fingers, the fingerprints will quickly disperse and it is not easy to adhere to dirt.
Talk about a small way to check
With a mouth to the surface of the faucet, it will immediately form a layer of water vapor. For products with good electroplating quality, the water vapor will fade away quickly and evenly. If the quality is not good, the fading speed will be slower, and it will not fade. The faster and more even the water vapor fades, the better the quality.
/03 Look at the brand
When buying sanitary products, you must buy a big brand, because sanitary ware is a durable consumer product that can be used for up to 5 years once you buy it, so you must buy a big brand product, so that both the material and the quality are reliable.
/04 After sale
The after-sales service of the product is very important, and it is also the guarantee that you have no worries. You must purchase products with good after-sales service. The general faucet is guaranteed for at least 5 years.
When choosing a faucet, the most important thing is to look at the material, coating and valve core of the faucet, because whether the material is safe and environmentally friendly determines the safety of the water, and the coating can increase the service life of the faucet and make the faucet scratch-resistant , Corrosion resistance, and the surface brightness will be better. At the same time, it depends on the valve core of the faucet. The valve core is the heart of the faucet. Generally, the better quality products use the ceramic valve core, which has the characteristics of strong wear resistance and good sealing performance.