11 Reasons Touchless Faucets Aren’t Working

why is my touchless faucet not working

Is your touchless faucet misbehaving? Explore 11 common issues and solutions in this guide.

With the rise in technological advancements, touchless faucets have exponentially increased in popularity.

These innovative kitchen and bathroom technologies offer unparalleled convenience and a significant boost to hygiene.

However, touchless faucets can malfunction like any tech, leading to significant frustration.

Understanding the common issues can help troubleshoot problems effectively, keeping your faucet in top working condition.

Sensor Problems

1. Sensor Obstruction

One common problem I have encountered with touchless faucets is sensor obstruction. This often happens when something is placed too close to the faucet, blocking the sensor’s range.

I remember a time when my touchless faucet suddenly stopped working. After investigating, I discovered that a tall vase of flowers I had just placed on the counter was obstructing the sensor.

Moving the vase away solved the issue immediately. Hence, always ensure that the area around your faucet is free from tall objects or other potential obstructions.

2. Dirty Sensor

A dirty sensor is another common issue that can cause your touchless faucet to malfunction. A layer of grime or dirt can block the sensor from detecting motion correctly.

I recall a time when I was cooking a particularly messy meal. Sauce splattered everywhere, including on my faucet sensor.

I soon noticed that the faucet wasn’t responding to my hand movements. It worked like a charm after cleaning the sensor with a damp cloth. The lesson here is simple: keep your sensor clean!

3. Sensor Misalignment

Finally, the sensor might be misaligned, causing your touchless faucet to behave erratically. This happened to me during a DIY kitchen remodel.

I had disassembled my faucet for a deep cleaning, and it wasn’t functioning correctly when I put it back together.

The sensor was misaligned during reassembly, causing it to detect movements inaccurately.

Everything was back to normal after adjusting the sensor to its correct position.

If you’re noticing consistent issues with your faucet not detecting motion correctly, it might be worth checking if the sensor is correctly aligned.

Power Supply Issues

Often overlooked, power supply issues are another frequent cause of touchless faucet malfunctions.

There are several different ways that power problems can manifest, including dead batteries, electrical problems, and interruptions in the power source.

4. Dead Batteries

Dead batteries are one of the most common causes of power supply issues. This happened to me a couple of years ago.

I was preparing for a dinner party, and suddenly, my touchless faucet stopped working. I was puzzled and checked for blockages, cleaned the sensor, and even tried realigning it – everything was fine.

Then, I realized I hadn’t replaced the batteries in over a year. Sure enough, my faucet was up and running after putting in new batteries. Now, I make it a point to check the batteries periodically.

5. Electrical Problems

Electrical problems can also cause your touchless faucet to stop working. I remember when I was remodeling my kitchen, and the electrician accidentally cross-wired the connections.

For my life, I couldn’t figure out why my faucet was behaving erratically. It would turn on and off randomly, independent of any movement!

Only after consulting with the electrician did I discover the mishap. Once the wiring was corrected, the faucet worked perfectly.

6. Power Source Interruptions

Lastly, power source interruptions can cause your touchless faucet to malfunction. I experienced this during a storm last summer.

There were frequent power outages, and each time the power came back on, my faucet wouldn’t work.

It took me a while to realize that the power interruptions were causing the faucet’s sensor to reset, throwing it off.

From then on, I started unplugging the faucet during storms and plugging it back in when the power was stable. This minor adjustment helped me avoid the same problem in future storms.

Plumbing and Water Flow

7. Low Water Pressure

Low water pressure can make your touchless faucet less effective. When I first moved into my home, the water pressure in the kitchen was dismal.

The faucet would barely trickle water, making washing dishes or filling a water jug frustrating.

After some investigation, I found out that the low water pressure was due to old, corroded pipes in the house.

Replacing the pipes solved the problem, and the touchless faucet began to work as it should.

8. Clogged Aerator

A clogged aerator is another common problem that can affect the performance of your touchless faucet.

I discovered this issue when I noticed water flowing unevenly from my faucet. It turned out that tiny particles of lime and other mineral deposits had built up in the aerator over time, blocking the water flow.

After removing and cleaning the aerator, the water flow returned to normal. Now, I make it a habit to clean the aerator every few months to prevent this issue.

9. Solenoid Valve Troubles

Solenoid valve troubles are another reason your touchless faucet may not work correctly. This was a lesson I learned the hard way.

My faucet would turn on, but the water would not stop flowing. Initially, I thought it was a sensor issue, but after some research, I realized it was the solenoid valve – a component controlling the faucet’s water flow.

Mine was stuck open, causing the water to flow continually. After replacing the solenoid valve, my touchless faucet started functioning correctly again.

I now pay close attention to the solenoid valve to avoid further issues.

Maintenance Neglect

Maintenance neglect is, perhaps, one of the most preventable causes of issues with your touchless faucet.

I too, fell into the trap of negligence until the repeated troubles with my faucet forced me to reconsider my approach.

Here are some key aspects of maintenance that I learned to pay attention to:

Regular Cleaning

Regular cleaning is the first step in maintaining your touchless faucet. I came to understand this when I faced recurrent issues with the aerator.

While it may seem simple, regular cleaning prevents the buildup of mineral deposits that could clog up your faucet.

Now, my cleaning routine includes the aerator, the sensor, and the faucet’s exterior, ensuring they remain free from grime and mineral buildup.

Component Inspections

Component inspections are another crucial part of maintenance. Remember my solenoid valve story?

That was a wake-up call for me to realize the importance of inspecting the different components of my faucet.

Now, I make a point to check the solenoid valve, hoses, and connections periodically to detect any possible issues early on.

Preventive Maintenance

My journey with touchless faucets taught me that preventive maintenance is always better than reactive repair.

One instance that stands out is when I replaced my old, corroded pipes. The experience taught me to prevent issues before they arise instead of waiting for them to become apparent.

I now schedule regular preventive maintenance checks every few months, including replacing batteries before they completely die out, checking for leaks, and ensuring the sensor is clean and unobstructed.

The lesson I’ve learned is that a bit of attention to maintenance can go a long way in preventing most of the common issues with touchless faucets. Trust me; it’s well worth the effort!

Faucet Model-Specific Issues

  • Manufacturer Variances

Every touchless faucet is unique! I didn’t consider this when I first installed my touchless faucets.

Different manufacturers have different features and designs and require different maintenance procedures.

So, I always recommend reading the manufacturer’s manual thoroughly. It’s like the faucet’s personal diary, revealing all its secrets!

  • Model-Specific Quirks

And then there are those model-specific quirks. I had a touchless faucet model with an unusual sensor placement that made the faucet slightly more sensitive to movement.

At first, it was quite irritating when the tap would start on its own just by me passing by! Over time, I got used to it and figured out the optimal distance for activating the faucet.

I learned that every model has its quirks, and it’s all part of the journey of having a touchless faucet.

Troubleshooting and Quick Fixes

  • Steps to Diagnose the Problem

Diagnosing the problem is like playing detective. It involves studying the symptoms and tracing back to the root cause.

I remember when my faucet wouldn’t turn on, and after carefully evaluating the power source, sensor, and solenoid valve, I discovered it was just the batteries that needed replacing.

So, always start with the simple stuff before diving into more complex possibilities.

  • DIY Solutions for Common Issues

There are plenty of DIY solutions for common issues. For example, when my faucet sprayed water everywhere, I quickly realized I had to clean the aerator.

Another time, the water wouldn’t stop flowing, and I discovered the problem was with the solenoid valve.

A quick search online led me to a tutorial on replacing it. Doing it myself was satisfying and saved me a ton of money!

  • When to Call a Professional

Knowing when to call a professional is crucial. When my DIY attempts didn’t work, I knew it was time to call in the experts.

Once, I had an issue with the electrical wiring that was beyond my understanding. I didn’t take any chances and immediately called a professional plumber.

It’s essential to know your limits when troubleshooting issues with your faucet.

Extended Maintenance Tips

  • Proper Cleaning Techniques

Cleaning a touchless faucet isn’t as straightforward as you’d think. I’ve learned that abrasive cleaners can damage the faucet’s finish, so I use gentle, non-corrosive cleaning agents.

And for tricky spots like the sensor, I use a soft microfiber cloth to avoid scratching the surface.

  • Scheduled Checks

I can’t stress enough the importance of scheduled checks. Regular weekly or monthly checks can spot potential issues before they escalate into more significant problems.

I set a reminder on my calendar to check all components of my touchless faucet and it’s been a game changer!

  • Protecting Against Future Issues

To prevent future issues, I always ensure that I replace batteries on time, keep the sensor clean, and the aerator free from buildup.

These steps, though simple, prevent the most common issues and can save a significant amount of time and money in the long run.


From manufacturer variances to model-specific quirks and from troubleshooting to extended maintenance, there are multiple reasons why touchless faucets may not work. But trust me, it’s not too hard to manage once you get the hang of it.

If there’s one thing I want you to take away from all my faucet stories, it’s the importance of regular maintenance! It’s the secret sauce to keeping your touchless faucet functioning flawlessly.

Finally, don’t forget to enjoy your touchless faucet! Yes, there might be occasional issues, but remember, you’re equipped with all the tips and tricks to handle them.

These faucets’ convenience and hygiene benefits far outweigh the minor hiccups you may encounter. So, keep calm and enjoy your high-tech faucet!


Hi! I’m Kobby, one of the co-owners of favoredstoneguides.com and the newest house owner in town. I’m a huge fan of most things natural. Over here on this site, I'm happy to share all the exciting hacks, tricks, and tips I have learned and continue to learn each day about taking care of natural stones.

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