How to Fix an Outdoor Faucet

outdoor faucet

A broken outdoor faucet can put a real damper on your day. Most of the time when you go to use your spigot, you’ve already planned an activity. Whether it’s washing your car, watering the garden, filling a pool, or setting up an activity for the kids, turning it on to find out that it’s broken can wreck all your plans.

The good news is that there are easy ways to repair a broken spigot. In this article, we’ll walk you through the different causes behind broken outdoor faucets and show you some techniques for fixing them.

Common Issues with Outdoor Faucets

Lack of Water Flow: No water coming out of your faucet could mean there’s an issue with the vacuum breaker or a blockage in the faucet. If you’ve taken the faucet apart and found no blockage, unscrew the vacuum breaker (backflow prevention device affixed to the faucet, it is usually a round cap sitting near the faucet at a higher elevation) and check to see if there is any debris there that could prevent water flow.

If you’ve taken the faucet apart and checked the vacuum breaker, you could be dealing with a more serious plumbing issue. Call in a licensed professional for a quality home plumbing diagnosis.

Dripping Faucet: A dripping faucet indicates that a part is loose within your spigot. Usually, you can spot a loose component from the outside, or you may just need to replace the faucet altogether. But read on for more detailed steps you can take.

How to Repair a Leaky Outdoor Faucet

If you’re experiencing a leaky outdoor faucet, it’s most likely due to part of the faucet being loose or worn.

We recommend making this fix quickly, as even small leaks can waste water and increase your water bill. Find out how much money you’re spending on your leaks with our water drip calculator.

For a simple leaky faucet repair, follow these three steps:

  1. Take a close look at the external area of the faucet and tighten the packing nut. If the packing nut is loose, this could be the reason for the leak.
  2. If the leak persists, replace any worn washers, screws, or other internal components that could be allowing leaking water to get through.
  3. If you’ve tried both steps and still can’t locate the issue, we recommend purchasing a new faucet, as the issue could simply be that your stem is too old and corroded.

How to Fix a Broken Outdoor Faucet Handle

Sometimes it’s just the faucet handle that’s the problem. The best way to fix a broken handle on your faucet is simply to replace it. Here’s how:

  1. Find the screw holding the handle to the faucet and unscrew it.
  2. Take the broken handle to a local hardware store so you can match the size.
  3. Screw the new handle onto the faucet.

Test the handle to ensure your new faucet handle is working properly.

How to Replace an Outdoor Faucet

If your faucet needs to be completely replaced, follow these seven steps:

  1. Purchase a frost-proof faucet and shut off the water supply to the house to prevent flooding, water waste, and possible damage.
  2. Completely drain the water from the faucet by unscrewing the valve. You may need to use a second wrench to hold the pipe in place.
  3. You may need to drill holes into the concrete surrounding your outdoor faucet to loosen it. Be careful you don’t drill into the existing faucet.
  4. Unscrew the faucet from the wall. You will need to use a large wrench to move the faucet counterclockwise until it comes free from the wall and pipe.
  5. Screw the frost-proof faucet back into where the old faucet was. Make sure it’s twisted in tightly to prevent leaks.
  6. Turn the water back on and test that there are no leaks and that the new faucet is working properly.
  7. Fill in the gaps with concrete and let it dry.

Faucet Repair and Installation in Your Area

Do you need help repairing or replacing a broken or leaky outdoor faucet? The experts at your local Mr. Rooter® Plumbing are here to help with everything from leaky faucet repair to home plumbing diagnosis. Call us or request an estimate online to get started today.