Monday, February 14, 2011

Outside Faucets

Here are a couple of pictures showing garden hoses attached to outside faucets in the winter. Please don't let this happen. At the least you're going to ruin your garden hose. But more importantly you're going to cause damage to you're home's plumbing.

The water in the hose and the water in the faucet are going to freeze and since water expands 9% when frozen something is going to give. And if it's the pipe connecting to the faucet, there's going to be quite a mess when the ice thaws and the water pressure in the pipe is now shooting into your home.

Here is your solution:
(reference the the photo below)

Before the freezing weather sets in, remove the garden hose, drain the water from it, and store it inside for next season. Then: 
  1. Turn off the inside shut off (pictured top right of photo below).
  2. Open outside faucet ( pictured top left of photo below)
  3. While holding a small container under the inside valve, loosen and remove the small cap on the side or bottom of the valve. At this point the water in the pipe between the inside valve and outside faucet will drain out.
  4. When all of the water is drained out, you can replace the small cap and close the outside faucet.
  5. Now, you're ready for the winter without worry of damage to this section of your home's plumbing.

In the spring you just need to open the inside valve and reattach your garden hose.

Just a few more points: That object in the bottom left of the photo is called a back flow preventor. It is a safety device designed to stop water from flowing backwards from the hose into your home's water piping system. This device screws onto the outside faucet and then the garden hose attaches to it. It is required by code and there for your protection.

And lastly: If you want to upgrade your system, and not have to perform the acrobatic steps outlined above, you can have a frost free outside faucet installed (pictured below). The advantage of the frost free faucet is that every time you turn it off the water is actually stopped inside the house at the end of the tube and it drains itself automatically. You still have to remove the garden hose and store it inside before the freezing temps set in.
Hope this was helpful to you.
And remember for solutions to all of your home's plumbing/heating concerns: Be smart call Bart.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Mission of this blog page

I hope to help my customers take some of the mystery out of the plumbing and heating systems in their homes. Also, to guide you towards a worry free future with these systems. I truly believe that a great deal (if not all) of emergency calls can be avoided with proper planning, maintenance, and scheduled repairs/replacements. This work can be done on a manageable and affordable basis. Many large scale projects can often be broken down into smaller pieces done over a period of time with a proper master plan in place.

Stay tuned for much more to follow.....

Thank you and remenber,
Be smart call Bart!