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What is a Frost-Free Faucet?



A hose makes life a little bit easier. It’s convenient to wash your car at home, or hose off the dog after an unfortunate run-in with a skunk. But a hose can also create a huge headache. If it’s not disconnected before the winter weather hits, you could have a burst pipe. Installing a frost-free faucet is a great way to be pro-active. Burst pipes are one of the most expensive plumbing repairs.

What happens during a freeze

leaking-outside-faucet-burst-pipeWhen the water inside the attached hose freezes, it expands and backs up into the attached plumbing. The pipe eventually runs out of room to expand and cracks. Once the ice begins to melt, you will have some serious clean up and repairs to do.

The best way to prevent this mess is to disconnect the hose each season. Another way to have some peace-of-mind is to install a frost-free faucet. A frost-free outside faucet is designed so that the pipe extends through the sidewall of the house, and combined with the flow valve, remains in the heated interior to prevent freezing.

Regular vs. frost-free faucet

The diagram below shows the difference between a regular outside faucet and a frost-free faucet. The main difference between the two is that the valve on the frost-free type is INSIDE the home where it’s warm. There’s no water near the faucet to freeze when it’s shut off. No matter what type of outside faucet you have, you MUST remove the hose during the winter to avoid a burst pipe!

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Outside faucet installation

We recommend installing outside faucets in the spring or fall. If you choose the fall season, they should be installed BEFORE the first frost. To schedule a professional installation by one of our licensed plumbing technicians, please call 860-228-1036. To see photos of other plumbing work we’ve installed or repaired, please click HERE or HERE. For more plumbing tips, please follow us on Twitter.