Issues with hose bibb in porch?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by DavidTu, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. DavidTu

    DavidTu Member

    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    What are issues with an outdoor hosebibb mounted on an exterior porch wall? We're running 3/4" pex about 4' in unheated space below a porch. If we put insulation around pipe and provide an interior valve are we good? The newer self-draining bibbs need to terminated inside the house, correct? So that would not help here I believe.
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,992
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    In Seattle, if you are extending the pipe beyond the closed-in heated shell, you will need an interior shutoff for Winter. If it's not properly drained, it will freeze.
    Many garages have a shutoff on the warm wall for the hosebib at the front of the garage.
  3. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,347
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    You have to understand insulation will not prevent freezing. Insulation slows heat transfer, but it does not stop it so the water has to be shut off before it gets into the unheated area and the pipe must be sloped enough to drain. Leave the hose bib open during the winter after the supply is shut off.
  4. DavidTu

    DavidTu Member

    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    What about if pipe IS in heated shell... do you skip the shutoff or put it in anyway as "best practices"?
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,984
    Location:
    New England
    If you can keep the frostfree hosebib's working parts in heated space, you don't need an internal shutoff. If you're using a 'regular' hose bib, you need an internal shutoff AND to be able to drain the water out of the pipe to the hose bib.

    Most frost free hose bibs can be damaged by freezing if you don't remove the hose when those conditions could occur...but, there are some that are designed to drain regardless of whether you leave a hose on or not. But, still, if the pipe behind it's connection is in an area that could freeze, unless you drain it, you're at risk.

    While pex might not be damaged by freezing, the connections don't stretch, and you'd likely damage those if they freeze.
  6. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,992
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    By heated shell, do you mean heat wrap?
    If so, does that still work when you lose power?

    We often get asked to install shutoffs "after" someone has been without water a few days, and likes the option of using the shutoff valve to the front hosebib and keeping the water on to the rest of the home.
  7. DavidTu

    DavidTu Member

    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    I didn't mean anything by it -- I was copying that term from your post! :)

    So are you saying with a frost-free hosebibb you would or would not put a secondary shutoff valve in the heated interior of the home?
  8. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,992
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    If the pipe is within the warm confines of the home, then there would be no need for an isolating shut off.

    I though the question was about extending a pipe through an unheated area, like front steps.
    If the porch is closed in, stopping wind from chilling the pipe, then it would be fine. I've never seen a pipe freeze in a crawl space in Seattle whether they were insulated or not.
  9. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,605
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; Leave the hose bib open during the winter after the supply is shut off.

    All that does is relieve the pressure. Unless the shutoff valve has a drain port on it, the valve and pipe will still be full of water, and depending on where the freezing starts and how it progresses, the pipe or valve could still burst. It just won't create a flood until the valve is opened in the Spring.
  10. DavidTu

    DavidTu Member

    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    It was the original question, then I was also wondering about the other case with pipe in the heated space and a no-freeze bibb; which you also answered, thanks!

    Sounds like we should get an inside shutoff with a drain on it though, eh?
  11. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,984
    Location:
    New England
    This is the safest way to do it, but then, you have to remember to actually turn it off AND open the drain port.
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