How to Replace a Vacuum Breaker

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Vacuum breakers are used to protect municipal and county water supplies from contamination by accidental siphoning. These fixtures serve as a one-way valve, allowing water to flow through an outdoor faucet, but not back into it. Many cities require the presence of vacuum breakers on outdoor faucets and other plumbing fixtures. It's fairly siimple to replace a vacuum breaker with a new one, if you need to bring your plumbing back up to code.

Things You'll Need

  • Vacuum breaker
  • Steel wool
  • Plumber's tape
  • Scissors
  • Pliers
  • Turn off the faucet where the vacuum breaker is currently installed. Rotate the handle to the right to cut the water supply.

  • Disconnect anything currently attached to the vacuum breaker, such as hoses or irrigation devices.

  • Unscrew the old vacuum breaker from the faucet by turning it counterclockwise. Use a pair of pliers, if needed.

  • Rub the threads on the faucet with steel wool lightly. Wrap the threads with plumber's tape. Pull the tape tightly as you wrap it around the threads. Trim off the excess portion of tape with scissors.

  • Screw a new vacuum breaker onto the faucet threads by turning it clockwise. Tighten with a pair of pliers.

  • Reconnect any hoses or irrigation devices.

  • Turn on the water supply and test the breaker connection. Tighten the breaker if the connection leaks.

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