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Dulley's Money-Saving Tip #1144

Unscrew garden hose from faucet to avoid frozen pipe

(related Dulley column topic links - 558)

It is important to remove your garden hoses from any outdoor faucets in the winter if the temperature falls below freezing. This is true even if you have no-freeze faucets where the valve/washer mechanism is recessed far back inside the house. If the faucet still drips just a slight amount, over time, it will fill the hose near the faucet, the faucet and the pipe itself. When water freezes, it expands and the faucet will surely be ruined. If you are lucky, the pipe will be spared, but it can split too.

I always remove the hoses and I am glad that I did last year. The washers in one of my faucets was leaky. During a long cold spell, I noticed a tiny icicle hanging from my front faucet. Had the hose been attached, it probably would have caused damage.