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hose bibb

Preparing for Spring – Hose Bibb 101

What is a hose bibb?

A hose bibb is an outdoor faucet/outdoor water spigot, which allows for a hose attachment.

Maybe you didn’t get a chance to prepare your hose bibb for the winter and now as you prepare to garden, fill the pool, wash your car, or play in the sprinkler, you’ve realized something is wrong.

Here are some reasons your hose bibb may not be working:

  • Did you turn on the shut-off valve for the winter to prevent frozen pipes?
    • Maybe the problem is as simple as turning the shut-off valve back on. Shut-off valves are typically located in the basement.
  • Is the washer in good condition?
    • The washer is a round ring made out of rubber or plastic and fits into the hose connection. The washer can deteriorate but you can pick one up at your local hardware store for a quick and easy DIY fix. If you see a washer that is cracked or in poor condition when you look into the hose connector, you can remove the old washer with a flat-head screwdriver or needle-nose pliers and replace it with the new washer!
  • Did you try tightening the packing nut?
    • It is the hexagon nut located directly behind the hose bibb handle. Tightening this nut with a wrench will often help stop any leaking that is coming from that area, plus, you might notice that your water bill will decrease.
  • Do you have hard water with a high mineral content?
    • If so, it is possible that the water flow is being blocked from solidified minerals. If the clog is close to the hose bibb, you may be able to unclog it yourself!

If your problems are still unresolved, you should call a professional plumber to assess whether your hose bibb needs to be repaired or replaced. Even a small leak can cause a major amount of damage to your foundation over time, not to mention the amount of water and money it wastes! It is best to get your hose bibb repaired as soon as possible to save money in the long run.

To protect your hose bibb for next winter, we recommend:

  • Detaching your hose
  • Turning off the shut-off valve to your hose bibb
  • Get a frost-free hose bibb installed

For a hose bibb repair or replacement, call your neighborhood plumber, Pride Plumbing at (585) 271-7150 or click here to schedule an appointment online.