Did you know that not all hose bibs are created equal? In a typical home there are several different types of hose bibs that are installed for different reasons. When you think about a hose bib, you normally think about the spigot that is outside your home, on which you attach your garden hose. There are, however, many different types of hose bibs used in your home. You should be aware of all the different types of hose bibs so that when you are looking to replace the part or install a new hose bib, you know which bib to research information about. Below is an explanation of a few hose bibs.
Frost Free Hose Bib
This is the most common type of hose bib found in a home. It is usually found on the outside spigot. It is also usually used more frequently in areas that receive a great deal of frost or below freezing weather conditions. It is constructed in such a way that you do not need to turn off the water to the spigot during the winter months. Without a frost free hose bib, your pipe may burst because the water will freeze in the spigot and will create damage to that pipe line. A frost free hose bib prevents this.
Non-Frost Free Hose Bib
Many older homes were not built with frost free hose bibs. In order to properly maintain your plumbing pipes, you will need to winterize this type of hose bib (especially if you live in a colder part of the country). Before the first frost occurs, turn off the water to the spigot and open the valve. This will drain all the water from the pipe and prevent a pipe bursting in the spring.
Round Plastic Hose Bib
This is a type of hose bib that is often found on a water heater. The hose bib will allow the homeowner to drain the water tank for cleaning, repair or replacement. This type of hose bib is easy to use and turn. If you are looking to pull it apart all you need to do is turn it clockwise and give it a little tug.
Knobbed Hose Bib
This is also a type of hose bib that can be found on a water heater. Again it is used to help to drain the heater when in need of repairs. To remove this type of hose bib or to loosen it in place, you will need a pipe wrench.
Loose Key Hose Bibs
You can purchase a hose bib that comes with what is called a 'loose key'. The loose key can be removed when the hose bib is not in operation. This helps the homeowner control who is able to access the hose bib. Without the 'key' (the key is basically the handle of the hose bib) you will not be able to turn the water on or off.