Hamilton Plumber

Why Your Outdoor Faucet Isn’t Working This Spring

Notes from a Hamilton Plumber

Thanks to our great Canadian winters, our outdoor faucet is exposed to some very cold weather. This means we need to take good care of our piping and outdoor faucets, especially when they are vulnerable to these drastic fluctuations from -40 to +40. It’s very common to have your outside faucet, hose bib, or garden faucet as it is commonly called, to freeze up due to poor installation. This is why it’s ideal for it to have its own line. Additionally, if you only turn off the valve with no drain installed there is still the possibility of the pipe splitting. Our Hamilton plumbers have come across some very interesting situations where people come home to some unfortunate surprises when filling their pool for example, the water ends up behind the wall.
I have a garage hose bib?
No problem! For those in town or row homes, it’s common to have a hose bib in the garage if there’s no room on your porch, and one out in your backyard. In this case, treat it as an exterior faucet.
What’s the difference between what’s on my faucet right now and a “frost-free” hose bib?
What’s on your faucet right now is likely your standard tap. It just has an turn on-off valve, and a faucet. The frost-free hose bibs are great, every brand may sell it as a different feature bt typically they are frost free, non-siphoning and anti-rupturing. Want to read more about frose-free hose bibs? I recommend you check out our blog post about it!
Do I need a hose bib?
In the Hamilton area, having a hose bib is not required by law. That said, it’s very common we receive phone calls from people who have discovered their faucet was dripping and resulted in a very costly water bill. A hose bib installation can certainly save a lot of headache and money in the future, as well as avoiding a potential pipe freezing from the winter and bursting will cost a great deal. This is the best way to protect your faucet.
Updating your hose bib so there’s a silicone flange, will also prevent potential critters from invading your basement by entering through the gap of your masonry and piping.
Can I install a hose bib myself?
Short answer: Not unless you’re the above average handy-person. Call our Hamilton plumbers.

Long answer: Though it is a relatively simple process (most of the time!), there are a lot of key tools that can be needed that Plumb Pros provides. Many home-owners do not own masonry equipment, as sometimes new holes or expanding sizing is required. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as taking the old valve off and putting on the hose bib, as it requires cutting into the copper piping from the basement, and using new and updated fittings. Thankfully Plumb Pros has installed hose bibs on a number of occasions, so we are efficient (cost and time wise) so it means you get a better and safer faucet sooner!

Everyone’s home is a bit different too… and the foundation of your home can vary case by case. We have been trained to However, there are many videos and resources online that offer DIYer’s the chance to do it themselves, you are certainly welcome to it if you have the right tools and skill.
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