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Outdoor hose

Outdoor Hose Leaks and Potential Fixes

Because garden hose connections are outside of the house, any kind of issues with them can get put on the back burner as they are typically “out of sight, out of mind”. You may think that a leaky hose outside of your house isn’t a big issue, it is outside after all and doesn’t require any cleanup on your end. But a leaky hose is a problem that should be taken seriously; it can be detrimental to your water bill, cause damage to your outdoor furniture, and unnecessarily waste water. Here are some problems that cause a leaky hose and how to fix them.

Problem #1: Water dripping from around the hose handle

Photo showing the handle of a hose as an area for a potential hose leak

Issue/Fix: If water is dripping from your outdoor hose from around the handle, this indicates that you likely have a worn-out washer or loose packing nut. Unscrew the handle to take a peek at the washer. If it looks worn down and warped, simply replace it. If that isn’t the issue, then it’s likely that your packing nut is loose. Tighten the nut grip on the handle to fix the issue.

Issue/Fix: Dripping around the handle can also indicate that there’s an issue with the end of the hose. Over time, the end can warp due to extreme heat or cold. If you take the handle off and notice the end of the hose is warped, you can cut off the end to smooth it out and that should fix the problem.

Problem #2: Water dripping from the faucet

Photo showing the faucet of an outdoor hose as a potential source for a hose leak

 

Issue/Fix: If you notice water dripping from the faucet of your hose, this is also likely an issue with the packing nut. Simply loosen the nut all the way, and then tighten it in intervals to test until the leak stops. You can also check to be sure that the washer isn’t worn out, but that is a less likely cause for the leak. If that doesn’t fix the issue, you could also wrap valve tape around the connection (BEST to recommend which kind of tape).

Issue/Fix: Water dripping from around the faucet can also be a problem with the fittings. The gasket (a rubber washer) inside of them can get worn out over time. Unscrew the fitting, peek inside and take a look at the gasket. If it looks warped or worn out, replace it and that should fix the leak.

Problem #3: Leaking from the hose itself

Photo showing the body of an outdoor hose as a potential source of a hose leak

Issue/Fix: If your hose is leaking from the body of the hose itself, that’s a pretty easy fix as long as it doesn’t extend a considerable length of the hose. You can easily cut apart the hose on either side of the leak and piece it together with hose menders to resolve the issue.

As we’re going into the winter months, please be aware that a hose connected during the winter will trap water and potentially crack your water line, so be sure to go out and check on your hoses before closing up for the season. A perpetually leaky hose can cost you as much as $300 a month on your water bill. If you’re noticing a leak in your outdoor hose, act on it quickly before you waste too much water and overpay your bill. If you run through all of these solutions and still can’t fix the leak, it may be time for you to call your favorite plumber to come to take a look at your pipes and make sure everything is okay.