In line shut-off valve lets water through

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Old 08-26-11, 07:53 AM
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In line shut-off valve lets water through

This leads to an outdoor faucet & is where I turn the water off during the winter. It now doesn't completely shut off all the water and I still have a drip when it is off and the outdoor faucet is open. Do I need to replace it or can it be fixed? Are there instructions online to show me how?

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Thanks,
John
 
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Old 08-26-11, 10:27 AM
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Hi,

You need to replave the washer. If that is the actuall valve, it is that large nut at the body that needs to be removed to access the washer.

Make sure you turn off the house main before taking it apart.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 08-26-11, 01:36 PM
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Mike NJ,

Thanks so much! I just sprayed WD40 on it and will try to remove the large nut in the morning. Hopefully Home Depot will have the right washer for replacement.

And yes, that is a pic of the actual valve.

John
 
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Old 08-26-11, 03:48 PM
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Something you should be careful of John... that nut is going to be tight... and WD40 won't help with that. It's probably not going to be as easy as it seems to get that out... you need to hold the body of the valve... or else you will twist the whole valve right out of the pipes... and those solder joints, especially the one on top, don't look all that secure to start with.

Do you own a tubing cutter? If I was in your place, I would plan on replacing the valve... with a BALL VALVE, which will assure positive shut off in the future.

What you could do is try first... if you can't get it apart without busting the valve from the pipe, then go the replacement route. Pick up a washer kit, AND the replacement parts... and return what you don't use.

Check out the SHARK BITE, or GATOR BITE products while you are there... yes, they are more expensive, but there is NO SOLDERING needed. You will also need a short piece of 1/2" pipe to make up the section you cut out.

SharkBite® Ball Valve | Cash Acme

SharkBite® Push-Fit Fittings | Cash Acme

I would cut back the pipe on the bottom, past that kink, install the valve, then the short pipe, then a shark bite coupler... push it all together and you are done!

Just make sure to ream and sand any burrs off the pipe so you don't cut the O-ring.

Just sayin' that's what I would do... I don't think Mike likes Shark Bite though... so he might disagree with me... but that's cool... just wanted to pass my opinion on.

Oh... almost forgot... you probably want the ball valve with the 'drain' on the side, such as you already have. Let's you drain the pipe completely when you shut it off... just make sure to install the valve in the proper direction.

One more thing... don't freak out if you use the sharks and see a few drips of water when you first turn the water back on. It will stop as the O-ring seats itself.
 
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Old 08-26-11, 06:42 PM
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One more thing, have the valve about half-way open BEFORE you try to break the "bonnet" away from the body. Make absolutely certain that the valve is partially open after screwing the bonnet back into the body hand tight BEFORE using the wrench to fully tighten.
 
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Old 08-27-11, 05:35 AM
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Oh boy, does NJ Trooper's reply change things! I definitely want to go with the better ball valve so don't have to go through this again. I printed out all the replies and will bring them to Home Depot this morning.

There is more to the problem that I was going address after the valve was fixed. The outside faucet must have froze last winter and leaks like a sieve inside and outside the garage wall. Since I'm going to be cutting the old valve off I'll see if HD has a simple cap to stop the water. Then I can remove the entire indoor and outdoor assembly, take a picture and ask for more advice.

Thanks much!
John
 
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Old 08-27-11, 07:54 AM
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I'd install a frostproof sillcock to avoid the freezing in the future. Here is a helpful bit of information.

How to Install a Frost-Proof Faucet | Video | Plumbing | This Old House
 
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Old 08-27-11, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by CasualJoe View Post
I'd install a frostproof sillcock to avoid the freezing in the future. Here is a helpful bit of information.

How to Install a Frost-Proof Faucet | Video | Plumbing | This Old House
Thanks! I will definitely do that.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 08:08 AM
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Installation was a piece of cake with the SharkBite fittings. Unfortunately, I seem to have gotten a bad faucet that leaks. A very short youtube video if you click the pic:



Guess I'll have to take it back and start over.

Thanks again!
jt
 
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Old 09-01-11, 08:28 AM
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Hmm. What is that adapter where the hose attaches to??????

Thats where it looks like its leaking from. Should be male hose bib threads and female hose end.

Let us know.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 09-01-11, 08:59 AM
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Just a normal female hose end & it does not leak where the hose connects. If I remove the hose and shut off the faucet the leaking stops. 100' hose and back pressure seems to make the faucet leak. Sorry about the poor video. My camera does not take good closeup vids.

jt
 
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Old 09-01-11, 09:03 AM
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Looks to me to be just dripping out of the packing gland. Try opening the valve a turn or two and then snugging that hex portion behind the handle a bit, just enough to stop the drip.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 09:24 AM
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I thought it was an adapter also. I think the tightly wound spring strain relief fooled me. Plus, I've never seen a hose with that kind or female end on it.

Furd...I see the drip also, but I think there may be fine jet spraying up from the threads and hitting the nut?

First thing I'd do is put an o-ring hose washer in the female end and snug it down tight, then tighten the packing nut as was suggested.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 09:59 AM
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Just played with it some more. There is no fine spray and definitely drips from that nut. Oddly enough, if I force the faucet handle open (like more than normally would be full flow) the drips stop. Shut the faucet off even harder than normal & it still drips from back pressure in hose. (the hose nozzle is shut at the end of hose) Think is a defective or piece of crap faucet?
 
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Old 09-01-11, 10:13 AM
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Forcing it all the way open sometimes does that. I think it's called "backseating" the valve. (Not like what your MIL does when yer driving...lol.)

I'd try the tightening of the nut under the handle after opening the valve. Should fix it just fine.

I like yer possum vids...you must be infested up there.

btw....never leave a hose closed at both ends except for a short time. They can burst from the pressure build up if heated from the sun.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 10:38 AM
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Tighten that nut where the handle stem goes into. If its leaking from there then its just the packing. New stuff always leaks from the packings from what I have been seeing.

When they are made they are often left loose.

I could of swore in the vid its spraying up from that adapter. It only looks like its dripping from the packing.

I would remove that adapter, cut the end of the hose and install a female hose end, if that is the case. Looks like the washer is faulty ar lack of one at that adapter.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 09-01-11, 11:08 AM
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Mike...don't think it's an adapter...just a hose end with big flats instead of the more common knurled type or the knurling and small flats.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 11:22 AM
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Well waterever it is IMO its clearly spraying up towards the packing from the hose bib threads. I watched the vid several times and paused throughout. You can see the spray. And the fact that the camera moves slightly towards the end you can see the spray partially blocking wall inperfections in the distance. ( Black specs on the wall? )

Could be wrong though.
Mike NJ
 
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Old 09-01-11, 11:27 AM
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Yeah...I did the same thing...thats why I suggested the new o-ring washer first.

Simple test....put a piece of cardboard or something between the hose connection and the packing nut.

Heck...could be 2 things are wrong?
 
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Old 09-01-11, 11:30 AM
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You guys ain't going to believe this.... the leaking stopped all by itself! I just now turned everything off and will test again tomorrow when I water my pathetic garden out back in the woods.

Very hot day (100°) here in Misery & the faucet and much of the hose are in direct sun.

Gunguy,

I trap and release 2-3 doz possum & coons every year out in my container garden. Possums stink like you wouldn't believe! They both do a lot of damage to a garden.

Thanks everyone! I'll report back tomorrow if the faucet still leaks or not.

jt
 
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Old 09-01-11, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Gunguy45 View Post
Yeah...I did the same thing...thats why I suggested the new o-ring washer first.

Simple test....put a piece of cardboard or something between the hose connection and the packing nut.

Heck...could be 2 things are wrong?
I wrapped a piece of cloth around the hose connection and there was definitely no spray.
 
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Old 09-01-11, 12:01 PM
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I've never noticed that opossums smell any worse than any other wild animal. I've also never noticed that they are in the least bit destructive but are actually quite benign.

Raccoons on the other hand...
 
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Old 09-01-11, 12:30 PM
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Yeah...I believe it could stop depending on the packing they use...after some exposure to water and a few cycles of the handle..they might swell some or conform to the shaft. Might still want to tighten it just a smidge (technical term, huh?).

When I lived in VA I'd normally have to remove 1 or 2 juvenile possums from my garage each year. Had a cat flap on the mandoor and left water and food in bowls for our outside cat...as well as the big containers of cat food and birdseed. I'd normally just put on a set of long sleeve welders gloves and distract them with a stick in their face, then grab 'em like a cat by the scruff of their neck. Drop 'em in a garbage can with a secure lid or similar, then drive 'em over to the city park for release. And yeah...they do stink pretty bad...even the young ones.

Never dealt with coons in VA...I wouldn't have tried grabbing them, unless they were real small. Growing up back in OH we had some, but our dog would normally take care of them, or if they were too big, I'd get the dog off and Dad would shoot 'em.

I was amazed at the size of some of the possum at the place I stayed in CA for a few months before moving here. Seriously...I'd bet they went 30 lbs or more for adults. Bigger than I'd ever seen anyway. Urban area and people just hid behind their windows and watched them. Prob rules about disturbing wildlife as well.
 
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Old 09-02-11, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Furd View Post
I've never noticed that opossums smell any worse than any other wild animal. I've also never noticed that they are in the least bit destructive but are actually quite benign.

Raccoons on the other hand...
It's unreal how strong and mean coons can be. Some are actually rather cute and cuddly, but most will bite you if given half a chance. I've had them destroy cages trying to get out.
 
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Old 09-02-11, 06:31 AM
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Tried it this morning while the hose was cold and after a full minute it started dripping again. I tightened that big hex nut a little and it stopped. I'm afraid what might happen if I tighten it too much. Left the faucet on and the hose hooked up and shut off at the far end just to see what happens when the sun heats it up. It's a new hose and I have never had a new one blow up. Have blown a hole in older hoses many times.

Thanks, everyone for the help!
 
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Old 09-02-11, 09:29 AM
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The "big hex nut" is called a packing gland. When you tighten it it compresses the "packing" either a resilient washer (rubber or Teflon) or a graphited yarn around the "stem" of the "spindle" that connects the handle to the valve itself, which is a "disc" (faucet washer) compressing against the "seat" of the valve proper. The packing fills the space between the stem and the inside of the valve body and compressing the packing is how you seal the space. The more you tighten the packing the harder it will be to turn the handle opening or closing the valve.


(image courtesy of LazyPup)

Note that the actual valve, the part that stops the flow of water, is at the opposite end from the handle. With this faucet it is normal for it to drip a tablespoon or so of water after completely shutting the valve. Also, you MUST remove the hose during freezing weather to allow the contained water after the valve seat/disc to drain or it WILL split the assembly from freezing.
 
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Old 09-02-11, 11:43 AM
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Furd,

Thanks so much for the diagram & explanation! I feel much better about having to tighten the packing nut on a new faucet now. I still think one shouldn't have to do that on a new faucet though. Granted, not a big deal for someone with plumbing experience, but is worrisome to a newbie just trying to save some $ by doing it himself.

One more outdoor faucet that needs to be replaced & I'm almost looking forward to doing it. It's in a very, very tight space, but from what I've learned in this thread alone think will be doable using a SharkBite slip coupling.
 
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Old 09-02-11, 12:17 PM
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It is very common, almost a given, that the packing nut will need adjusting on a new valve installation. I don't know if the DIY books show this but they should.
 
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Old 09-02-11, 03:22 PM
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I would have to say that nearly every single valve I've ever installed has had to have the packing gland 'snugged' up after installing. I'm sure it's because the manf don't overtighten them when built. Doing so would decrease the life of the packing.

If it's a faucet that gets used a lot, that packing will wear out over time and the packing will need to be replaced. But, before replacing it, always just 'snug' the packing nut a bit. It will almost always stop the leak cold.

Never 'muscle' those packing nuts tight... you only want just enough pressure so that they don't leak.

I really like sharkbite for certain applications. Most codes will allow it inside a closed wall, and underground even... but I'm still not that comfortable with it. I'll happily use it anywhere the pipe is exposed and open for periodic inspection, or in a difficult position for repair. I just used a number of the slip fittings to cut in a new bathroom addition... didn't have to worry about draining the 'almost impossible to properly drain' piping so I could solder. Plus, it was in a VERY difficult position to solder without burning down the house...

My old Spaniel could always tell us when a possum was out on the grape arbor chowing down on my Zinfandels... from INSIDE the house... yes, them possums are stanky! About 2 weeks ago I watched a possum get sprayed by a skonk (from INSIDE the house!)... that one was REALLY stanky!
 
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