Frost Free Hose Bibs

May 17, 2014 - Benjamin Dowson

Frost Free Hose Bibs – Your best defense against splitting pipes

Spring is finally here! But apart from the warming weather and longer days, we should also consider the outdoors maintenance work that needs to be done. Today we will be talking about frost free hose bibs, and why it is important to check on them in the Spring.

What are Frost Free Hose Bibs?

Frost free hose bibs are special faucets that you can attach a hose to and are designed for outdoor use. Unlike conventional outdoor faucets, they are attached to a pipe (called a “stem”) that is designed to go through the exterior wall right into the inside of your house.

Why would we need Frost Free Hose Bibs?

When water freezes, it expands. This expansion is strong enough to crack your pipes if the water was frozen inside of it. Here in Canada we have an abundance of cold weather, so you can imagine that splitting pipes is a real concern!

What frost free hose bibs actually do is help protect your pipes from splitting due the expansion and contraction of water during the colder months. The purpose of the long stem on these hose bibs is to push the supply pipe and shutoff valve away from the exterior of the house where water can freeze easily. When frost free hose bibs are installed, they should be installed sloping down away from your house. This ensures that water is pushed away from the supply pipe and out the faucet.

Things to look for on your Frost Free Hose Bibs

Avoid this with a Frost Free Hose Bib!

Spring is the ideal time to check on your Frost Free Hose Bibs because you will find out whether or not any damage has been done to them over the winter months. Damage caused to Frost Free Hose Bibs is usually due to either poor installation, or forgetting to unscrew your garden hose to the faucet. Either of these 2 scenarios causes water to pool inside of the stem, crack over the Winter, and leak when you try and use it in the Spring. Every Spring we have an influx of calls regarding split pipes relating to both regular faucets and frost free hose bibs.