With the weather warming up, I’ve got the great outdoors on my mind. One project that is relatively easy to complete and will help prevent damage to your home is the addition of frost-free hose bibbs to your plumbing. Boston homeowners who have dealt with frozen hose bibbs, or worse – the damage they leave behind – can attest to the utility of having frost-free hose bibbs.
A frost-free hose bibb operates like an ordinary hose bibb does. You attach a hose to a standard threaded connector, and open and close the valve with a simple twist. The design of the frost-free hose bibb is what gives this addition its value. The frost-free hose bibb helps prevent pipe damage that can be caused when standing water freezes in-line. Often, homeowners don’t find this kind of damage until they try to use a hose and get a stream of water in the basement instead.
In new construction, frost-free hose connections are all but mandatory. In older homes, however, frost or freeze damage to the outside faucets is a real danger, and homeowners can benefit from this addition. Frost-free faucets have a long stem that extends into the home and connects to a shutoff. Once the water supply is shut off, the water that remains in the stem can drain away, leaving the stem empty and free from frost danger. The shutoff valve is located deep enough in the home to eliminate the danger of freezing in the supply pipe.
One word of caution: once your frost-free hose bibbs are installed, be sure to disconnect your hoses and drain the faucets prior to the beginning of the frost season. An attached hose will prevent the faucet from draining properly and you might end up with another damaged outdoor faucet.
To install a frost-free hose bibb, you’ll need a frost-free hose bibb and some common plumbing tools like a pipe cutter, and brazing equipment to make the new joints. If you would like to add frost-free hose bibbs to your home but don’t have the equipment, skill or experience, the plumbing professionals at Boston Standard Plumbing & Heating can help. We’ll add frost-free hose bibbs to your outdoor plumbing setup and show you how to maintain them correctly and enjoy years of trouble-free use. If you’d like more information about adding a frost-free hose bibb to your home, call us at (617) 288-2911 and we’ll schedule a visit!
Next week, I’ll discuss adding hot water to your outdoor faucets.