How To Winterize Outdoor Faucet

A frozen hose spigot is more costly to repair than you think which is why you should winterize outdoor faucet. Cold temperatures often freeze outdoor spigots, resulting in damages or other plumbing emergencies that you cannot avoid. So if you experienced that before or if you are expecting extreme winter, it is time to winterize those outdoor spigots. To prevent those from happening, here are 4 simple steps that you can follow to protect your faucets.

1. 4 Steps To Winterize Outdoor Faucet

1.1. Step 1: Disconnect All Hoses

When the cold temperatures start to settle in, it is time for you to disconnect all your hoses and attachments outside. This is to ensure that there is no water remaining in the pipes because they can freeze in cold weather. Remember to begin this step right before autumn ends before it is too late to save your faucets. In case you want to use the water outside, it is advisable to try a different source instead. How about the freeze-proof spigots? Do you have to remove that as well? The answer is yes because the remaining water can still freeze inside under extremely cold temperatures.

1.2. Step 2: Inspection

After you remove all fittings and hoses, you still have to check them daily in case there are drippings or leaking. These two factors can also lead to freezing outdoor faucets if it is connected to the spigots. Should any of these occur, it is important that you fix or replace them before the winter comes. This is just the next step to take to save your outdoor faucet from freezing. When there is dripping or leaking from the faucets, that means the cartridge or other water sources has a leak. Because when that happens, it can block up the entire faucet or spigot which leads to other damages.

1.3. Step 3: Draining

Removing the hoses is good, but you should also drain the remaining water from the pipe as well. Winterizing outdoor faucet is incomplete if there is still water in the pipe because it can still freeze. So after you disconnect the fittings and hoses, the next thing to do is shut off the valve to outdoor faucets and spigots. Once you do so, there is no more water running in the hose, but there could be remaining water inside. That means you have to open the faucets and spigots outdoor for a couple of hours. Doing so can drain the remaining water from the pipe to prevent freezing when the cold temperatures begin. When there is no more dripping from the spigots, then you may close it. This step is not necessary if you have a frost-free type of faucets or spigots.

1.4. Step 4: Outdoor Faucet Covers

You cannot trust that the 3 steps above are enough to prevent your faucets or spigots from freezing. This is why this fourth step brings extra peace in mind to ensure that the possibility of freezing is low. Installing outdoor faucet covers is essential for winterizing outdoor faucets and spigots. These covers act as a form of insulation, just like heaters, to maintain the temperatures to avoid freezing. Although frost-free spigots have higher chances to be safe from freezing, it is recommended to install the covers on them too. There are many different outdoor faucet covers that you can find, and their price is also affordable. You can reuse these covers every year, and the installation process is rather easy and simple.

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2. FAQs On Winterizing Outdoor Faucet

2.1. What is a frost-free faucet?

A frost-free faucet looks almost identical to the regular faucet, appearance-wise. The differences between them are the interior design and performance in winter. Froze-free faucets are unique because they come with a long pipe at the back end that goes way deeper into the house. Also, their faucet is at the end of that long pipe while a regular faucet has a valve beneath its handle. This longer pipe keeps the water deeper in the hose, so it does not affect the faucet and freeze at all. If you want to install a water faucet outside, you should go for a frost-free type to avoid freezing in winter.

2.2. Is a frost-free faucet better?

A frost-free faucet is better because the chances of freezing are lower than the regular faucets. Plus, with the outdoor faucet cover that you install, you can trust that the cold won’t bother it. You can also replace an existing faucet with a frost-free if you’d like; hiring a professional is a fast way for it. It is true that it can be a DIY project that you can do, but some wrong moves can cause damages. This is why you should leave it to the professionals, even if it is just a simple plumbing task. In case you want to give it a try, the video below can be helpful for the process.

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2.3. Is it okay to leave garden hoses outside in winter?

Yes, it is. The only thing that you have to make sure of is that there is no water left inside the hoses. Because the water will freeze at a certain temperature which may cause the hose to break or burst. Just to be safe, it is highly advisable to store your garden hoses in a container or a shed. Proper storage to avoid direct extreme temperatures also prolong the life of the hoses for long-term use.

2.4. What happens if I don’t winterize my faucet?

Chances are cracking or leaking in the pipes, resulting from freezing water. Even if you are having a frost-free faucet, it still can break if the hose remains attached to it. As long as there is water in the faucet head or the pipe, it will freeze when winter comes. Things are the same with hose bibs and other small faucets that you have outside the house. Winterizing outdoor faucets is one of the basic maintenance that you should know about. Failing to do so will result in broken pipes, and you will not be able to use them in spring. Even worse, it can also lead to serious water damage inside the house due to the pressure. Plus, with the expense of fixing or replacement, a lot will happen. This is why winterizing your outdoor faucets is a task that you should not overlook.

Final Thoughts

Winterizing outdoor faucet is very useful because it can save a lot of expenses to fix the damages. Freezing faucets or spigots are quite common, especially in areas with cold winter months. The good thing is that any problem has at least one solution, and you have already read them above. With just 4 simple steps, and you are able to save your plumbing system from freezing damages with ease. Feel free to drop your questions if you have any; I am always here to help you out.