Frost proof faucet problem

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by Dglas, May 22, 2010.

  1. Dglas

    Dglas New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Northwestr
    I had an American Valve frost proof faucet installed last year and it worked fine. Now when I turn it on water comes out of a hole in the stem. The hole appears to be part of the design. I removed the stem and tried to figure out how water gets into the stem. I find that the end with the washer is a spring loaded devise that opens when the faucet is turned on thereby allowing water to enter the stem. The stem appears to be manufactured this way so what holds the water out of the stem?

    Does this mean I have a defective stem?
  2. Dglas

    Dglas New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Northwestr
    I can find no one who knows how this works so will call the company tomorrow.
  3. krow

    krow Plumber

    Messages:
    906
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    I have never heard of a frost free hose tap that uses the stem to deliver water. As far as what you described, the spring loaded piece on the end acts as an anti-siphoning device. The entire barrel surrounding the stem is where the water travels out the tap. When you close the tap, the barrel empties on its own. The water is actually being stopped where the washer is (as you may of figured out already).
  4. Dglas

    Dglas New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Northwestr
    I apparently didn't explain very well. I understand how a frost proof faucet works and am well aware that the water is not delivered thru the stem but in this case that is the problem . When you turn on the water it flows thru the barrel to the faucet but some of it comes thru the stem and out a small hole placed in the stem just ahead of the handle - and squirts you in the eye. The spring loaded piece holds the washer and has nothing to do with the anti-siphoning devise which is on top of the faucet. When the faucet is turned on by backing the washer away from the seat it also can/does spring out and apparently this is the spot that allows water into the stem. At least I can find no other way that water can get into the stem. I went to Lowes and looked at a new one and it is built exactly the same way. I can't figure it out but maybe American Valve can enlighten me.
  5. krow

    krow Plumber

    Messages:
    906
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    It has everything to do with the antisiphon. The piece ahead of the handle is interconnected to the spring load end of the stem.

    pull it apart again and see if any sediment or particles are blocking around the spring and double check the knob above the handle is free af any debris
    Last edited by a moderator: May 23, 2010
  6. Dglas

    Dglas New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Northwestr
    The piece ahead of the handle is the stem. The handle is connected to one end and the spring loaded washer assembly is connected to the opposite end. The anti-siphon devise is not in any way connected to the stem but maybe the operation is somehow dependent on the spring loaded end of the stem. I will check for debris.
  7. krow

    krow Plumber

    Messages:
    906
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Precisely. You may find a pin hole under the antisiphone cap. (its supposed to be there)
  8. AnchorPoint

    AnchorPoint New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Philadelphia Suburbs
    I am having this exact problem, where water is pouring out of the hole in the stem, on an American Valve frost proof faucet.
    It had been working great for a year, then my wife was closing it and water started spraying.

    This is the only thread I can seem to find on this issue.
    Were you able to find a solution when you contacted them, Dglas?
  9. Sam Patel

    Sam Patel New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Arkansas
    The problem is explained perfectly. I am having the exact same issue. The spring loaded end has some sort of thin rubber/cloth type washer on top of which is the copper seat where the replacement shutoff washer (Standard) goes. I now have stopped the spigot from leaking when shut off. But when I use it I get water coming out of the hole just before the handle. HELP! is there a solution.
  10. paulgrass

    paulgrass New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    bedford pa
    Has anyone figured this out. I have the same problem. (See images)The first image is the water shooting out the hole, the second image is showing the hole after I shut the water off inside. American_Valve_01.jpg American_Valve_02.jpg
    Last edited: May 5, 2013
  11. 1cr_xxx

    1cr_xxx New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    York Pa
    I have the same problem. went to lowes, and the employee called American valve for me and they sent me a replacement. Put in the replacement parts, and I still have the same problem. Really would like to know how to fix this seeing as how everyone has this problem.
  12. 1cr_xxx

    1cr_xxx New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    York Pa
    Just sent a message to th company with a link to this thread. Hopefully we will get some answers.
  13. hamijohn

    hamijohn New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Iowa
    Check the hollow stem for a hairline crack. If you get an early hard freeze with the garden hose still attached, the thin walls of the stem will crack before the thicker outer wall cracks, and the remaining water will have a place to drain (out the little holes in the stem near the handle). Next Spring when you turn the water on, the pressure will be enough to force water through the hairline crack in the hollow stem and you will have the fountain shown above. A temp fix is to wrap the crack with teflon tape then use waterproof cement to coat. For $15 you can buy a new stem. And remember to disconnect the hose in September!
  14. hamlet_jones

    hamlet_jones New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Idaho
    Same valve, same problem. Tenant left hose hooked up all winter, and the next thing you know, water is coming out the stem. Replaced, but next time, I'm putting in a waste and drain valve inside the garage, and locking it for winter.
  15. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,025
    Location:
    New England
    FWIW, Woodford makes some that will drain, even if you leave a hose on. Cost a little more, but if it saves one service call, it's more than paid for itself.
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