How to Repair a Hose Bib & Vacuum Breaker


The best way to repair a hose bib and vacuum breaker is simply to replace them. Hose bib is another term for an outdoor faucet, the type used for connecting gardening hoses and sprinkler systems. In most setups, these bibs simply screw onto the end of a water supply pipe. Vacuum breakers are devices that fit on the end of the hose bib and only allow water to flow one way. This prevents backflow into the municipal water system.

Things You'll Need

  • Plumber's wrench
  • Pipe thread compound
  • Hose bib
  • Vacuum breaker
  • Turn off the water supply for the hose bib that you wish to repair. The procedure for this can differ from home to home. Look for a cut-off valve for the hose bib. This may be in the foundation of the house or the basement. If you do not find a separate cut-off valve, you will have to cut the water for the entire house at the main valve.

  • Remove any garden hoses or other attachments connected to the hose bib.

  • Use a plumber's wrench to turn the hexagonal base of the hose bib counterclockwise to loosen. Continue turning until the hose bib comes off the supply pipe.

  • Use a piece of steel wool to clean off the threads on the supply pipe. Apply pipe thread compound to the threads.

  • Screw on the new hose bib clockwise. Tighten with the wrench.

  • Screw in the new circuit breaker onto the end of the hose bib threads clockwise.

  • Reconnect any attachments to the hose bib. Restore the water supply. Turn on the hose bib faucet by turning the handle counterclockwise. Watch the connections and check for leaks. Tighten any couplings, if needed.

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