A hose bib is your outside water tap or faucet to which you can attach a hose. A hose bib goes by many names, including spigot, outdoor faucet, outdoor hydrant, sillcock, and water tap. A hose bib's purpose is to allow easy access to water outside.
Hose bibs are also used on water heater tanks and allow you to drain the water in the tank. This is for cleaning and maintenance purposes.
We offer a full range of hose bib services. At M&E Plumbing, we can repair, replace, or install a new hose bib for you. All you have to do is call us and set up a service appointment, and we will take care of your hose bib needs!
5 Types of Hose Bibs
Not all hose bibs are the same. There are actually different types of hose bibs. If you need to install a new hose bib or replace a worn-out one, it is important to understand your options:
1. Non-Frost Free
The oldest type of hose bib is a non-frost-free type. With this style of hose bib, you must drain the water inside the pipes and any connected shoes before winter. This will keep the water from freezing and damaging the pipes and faucet.
2. Free Frost
Free frost bibs are popular in areas like Illinois, where freezing weather is the norm in the winter. You don’t have to worry about draining the hose and connecting pipes with a free frost hose bib. You also don’t have to turn off the water supply to prevent freezing during the winter.
A free frost bib has different internal parts that push the water behind the valve into your home, where it will not freeze. They also help keep water from being sucked from your hose and back into your water system.
3. Loose Key
A loose key hose bib is controlled with a key that turns the water on and off. It uses an access control system to help conserve water when you are hot using your outside faucet. You have to be careful to keep track of the key though; if you lose it, you can’t use the faucet.
4. Round Plastic
A round plastic hose bib is typically used on water heater tanks, although it can also be used on outside spigots. They are easy to use and can be easily assembled and disassembled.
A knobbed hose bib has to be installed and replaced with a wrench.
At M&E Plumbing, we can help you choose the right hose bib for your outside faucet or for your hot water heater.
4 Reasons a Hose Bib Leaks
You don’t want your hose bib to leak. A leaky hose bib can waste a lot of water, damage your foundation, and even lead to internal mold and mildew. There are a few different reasons why your hose bib may be leaking.
1. Frozen Hose Bib
When water isn’t properly drained from a pipe before temperatures drop below freezing, the pipe can freeze and burst.
Most homeowners don’t clear the water from the pipe connected to the hose bib, damaging the water pipe connected to your hose bib. This damage usually occurs in the winter but isn’t discovered until the spring when you try to use your outside tap again.
2. Loose Packing Nut
Righ behind the faucet handle is a packing nut. When the packing nut becomes loose, your faucet will leak.
3. Worn-Out Washer
Inside of your outdoor faucet is valve steam, which holds a small rubber packing washer in place. When the washer wears out, the seal is compromised. Washers wear out for various reasons, such as heat, cold, age, and usage. When the washer wears out, your faucet will leak, and you will not be able to stop it.
4. Old Faucet
Outdoor faucets don’t last forever. If your faucet looks old and weathered or has started to rust on the outside, it is likely experiencing similar damage on the inside. Over time, mineral deposits can build up, and cracks can develop.
If your hose bib is leaking, call us at M&E Plumbing, and we will identify the source of the leak and fix the leak. We will fix the leaking faucet, check the internal water line, and ensure everything works properly.
Common Hose Bib Issues
An exterior hose bib's biggest issue is freezing. Many types of exterior hose bibs have to be winterized. Any connected garden hose or water outlet has to be disconnected. You should also turn off the water supply to the exterior tap, allowing the pipes to drain before it freezes.
Pay attention to what your faucet does when you turn it off. Does water drip out of it? If it does, an internal component may need to be replaced, or it may be time to replace the entire unit. Keep an eye on your hose bib, and take immediate action if you notice it dripping.
Outdoor faucets are exposed to the sun and water year-round, which can lead to corrosion and rust. This can result in the handle breaking off the faucet. If your faucet starts to rust and corrode, you will want to replace it immediately.
Hose Bib Services Near You in Grundy, Kendall, & Will Counties
Need an outdoor hose bib installed? Need to replace your hose bib? No matter what service your hose bib needs, we have you covered at M&E Plumbing.
Give us a call at 815-600-9215, or use our service request form to arrange a service call.