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Old 04-19-2012, 02:17 PM   #1
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


I have this outdoor frost-free faucet, which is probably about 18 years old:



Starting last night, we can turn the handle all we want but the water doesn't stop flowing. I've watched some videos today and think I understand what could be wrong inside there but have these two questions first:

1. I can't seem to get the screw in the center of the handle to loosen so I can't see what's going on inside. Do I just need some penetrating oil or something else? I tried WD-40 but no luck.

2. When the handle pulls in and out (instead of just turning) does that mean the whole stem needs to be replaced or could this still just be a problem with the packing nut?

Thanks y'all!

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Old 04-19-2012, 03:30 PM   #2
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


You'll have to get the handle off to access the packing nut to be able to replace the washer (assuming that is the problem).
Why won't the screw loosen? Too tight or is the screw head buggered?

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Old 04-19-2012, 04:48 PM   #3
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


The screw is rusted and so, too tight. I'll get to work on loosening it, somehow. Thanks.
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Old 04-19-2012, 04:57 PM   #4
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


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Originally Posted by Denverite View Post
The screw is rusted and so, too tight. I'll get to work on loosening it, somehow. Thanks.
It should be screwed into brass threads,hit the screw driver with a hammer while turning it,you may have to have someone hold the valves handle.(this is the reason I love never seize)
I have found it's cheaper to just replace the whole faucet then buy a repair kit,the price difference is only like $5.
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Old 04-19-2012, 05:43 PM   #5
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Turn off the water for the house & replace with a new faucet.
This link shows how to replace it. Have fun
Link removed---

Last edited by oh'mike; 04-19-2012 at 08:58 PM. Reason: Please do not send members to another DIY site for info--
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Old 04-20-2012, 08:01 AM   #6
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Thanks for the advice, everyone. I tried some PB Blast (or whatever it's called) on the faucet last night but it still won't budge. Someone else I know recommended getting an impact driver for this but I think I'm done. I'm going to call in a pro and just know the darn thing will start working again soon.

Thanks again!
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Old 04-20-2012, 10:23 AM   #7
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


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Originally Posted by Denverite View Post
2. When the handle pulls in and out (instead of just turning) does that mean the whole stem needs to be replaced or could this still just be a problem with the packing nut?

Thanks y'all!
Sounds like it needs to be replaced. That should not be happening
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Old 04-20-2012, 10:32 AM   #8
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Why call in a pro, it's about a $20.00 fix to just replace the whole thing.
Just have to go under the house to see what length the shaft is and what threads were used.
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Old 04-20-2012, 10:37 AM   #9
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Joecaption, it's the under the house part that's stopping me. The part of the faucet that's inside the house goes into my basement. That part of the basement is behind a built-in entertainment cetner the previous owner put in. Because of that, the only easy access would be to cut a hole in the exterior wall around the faucet and that makes me nervous. Never done that before, at least.

I am trying to avoid the situation where I call in a pro only after I make a real mess of the problem and he gets to charge me even more for the clean-up work. I really am tempted to do this myself, but knowing your limits is supposed to be a good thing, right?
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Old 04-20-2012, 09:41 PM   #10
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Provided that water does not come out of the stem, you could get an attachment with a (or two) built in shutoff valve(s) that screws onto the outdoor faucet and you screw the garden hose on the attachment and use the attachment to turn the water on and off.

There should be a shutoff valve inside the house somewhere just for this outdoor faucet. You turn the inside shutoff off for the winter. The screw on attachment with shutoff valve should be removed for the winter since it will freeze and break if filled with water.
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Old 04-21-2012, 11:17 AM   #11
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


OK, so I'm going to try to do this after all. I've cut a hole in the basement wall and now I can see the part of the faucet pipe that's indoors:





To me, that looks like I'll need to un-sweat the pipe first but I'm having trouble finding a guide / video that shows how to do this. I'm kind of afraid that I'll set my house on fire if I just go at that with a torch,eh.

1. Do I need to get a torch to remove that faucet pipe, or will it just unscrew?

2. If I do need to use a torch, what are all the precautions I should take? Tools I'll need, aside from someone with a fire extinguisher standing next to me?

Thanks!
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Old 04-21-2012, 05:04 PM   #12
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Outdoor frost-free faucet won't turn off


Woo! I did it. I ended up cutting the copper pipe just below that last 90 degree elbow, fitting on a new Sharkbite elbow, fitting on an extender just because I needed one more inch to reach the faucet's male threads, and then screwing in the new frost free sillcock. No torch! No welding!!



Thanks again to everyone with their good ideas. I appreciate the help.

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