Frost Free Faucets

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We are renovating our 80 year old Wright style house and are looking at replacing the current outside faucets with frost free faucets. We are in Wisconsin, so the winters get quite cold. The only issue is that the walls where these faucets are located are over 2.5" thick. This is making finding a long enough frost free faucet very hard, as the longest we can find is 12"-14" long.
I would prefer not to have to continue to empty these faucets each winter if I don't have to. Does anyone have any good ideas regarding this? Anyone know where you can get extra long frost free faucets?
Thanks, -Ryan
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On Sat, 17 Dec 2005 13:12:28 -0800, Ryan Born wrote:

I had this problem on one of my houses... I ended up putting a valve before the line went outside, running the pipe thru the foundation walls and installing a valve outdoors. During winter close the inside valve and leave the outside valve open. Seemed to work fine.
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"I ended up putting a valve before the line went outside, running the pipe thru the foundation walls and installing a valve outdoors. During winter close the inside valve and leave the outside valve open. Seemed to work fine."
This is also how I recommend doing it.
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Unfortunately, all the walls of the house are 36" thick stone and it does get cold enough in the stone to freeze the pipe all the way to the inside because I had it happen one year when I forgot to drain one of the pipes. There is no way to slope the pipe down to the outside so that I can simply open the outside faucet after I shut of the water inside. The longest frostfree valve made (even for commercial use) is 24". This means the shut off would still be 12" into the stone. At this point the only solution that the plumbers suggest is to put a shutoff valve and a drain valve inside. Unfortunately there is no good place to place this without it sitting in plain view in a finished space. I hoped that osmeone knew of a source of very long frost free valves that my plumbers and I had not discovered. Thanks
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On 17 Dec 2005 19:00:23 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

You must know by now that they make combination shutoff/drain valves.
There is a little cap that unscrews to do the draining. I've had trouble getting the cap undone sometimes, after I had trouble getting it tight enough to stop dripping, But it's ok this year. But buy one with a good design.

Put a model train around it.
Or a cover.
P&M

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"Unfortunately, all the walls of the house are 36" thick stone and it does get cold enough in the stone to freeze the pipe all the way to the
inside because I had it happen one year when I forgot to drain one of the pipes. There is no way to slope the pipe down to the outside so that I can simply open the outside faucet after I shut of the water inside."
Uh oh. If you can't slope it down towards the outside or at least make it level, then the freeze proof sillcock won't work either, as that has to be able to drain too. Something is very wrong if this is setup so the pipe is pitched in the wrong direction
Just out of curiousity, how do you know the pipe actually froze all the way back to the inside wall? Was it split that far in?
If you can get a 24" one, then one solution would be to enlarge the pipe opening to about 2" in diameter for the last 14" of the inside wall. If you seal off the pipe hole outside with expanding foam, that should allow enough warm air to get around the pipe so it won't freeze. It would be a pain to do, but it would be a solution.
The longest frostfree valve made (even for commercial use) is 24". This means the shut off would still be 12" into the stone. At this
point the only solution that the plumbers suggest is to put a shutoff valve and a drain valve inside. Unfortunately there is no good place to
place this without it sitting in plain view in a finished space. I hoped that osmeone knew of a source of very long frost free valves that
my plumbers and I had not discovered. Thanks
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Indeed. We've had a freezeproof sillcock burst. I think the builder didn't put enough slope in it.
--
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It\'s not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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Can't you just take a 24" apart, and stick in a longer pipe and rod?
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Yes. If you have a machine shop. If you have access to a machine shop, it'd probably be easier to make a frost free faucet from scratch tho.
Frankly, in situations like this, I think you're better off with a traditional inside shutoff and integrated bleeder. Less things to go wrong. Ie: a frost free faucet that leaks slightly, and the outside end got plugged by a spider nest. Replacing a frost-free faucet that's burst can be kinda nasty.
I've never been enamored of the things. Largely because I don't like washer-style faucets for exterior hose bibs. Too restrictive. I use full aperture ballvalves and gatevalves for my exterior plumbing.
--
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
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"I ended up putting a valve before the line went outside, running the pipe thru the foundation walls and installing a valve outdoors. During winter close the inside valve and leave the outside valve open. Seemed to work fine."
You do realise you are talking about an entirely different approach? The freeze proof sillcock has many advantages. Including that you don't have to remember to winterize it, which can be even more important for applications like rental rproperty. And, if you want to use some water a few times during the winter, all you have to do is turn on the faucet. IMO, it's the only way to go.
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Ooops, as a addition to my past post, I meant to say that the walls are over 2.5 FEET thick. Thanks!
-Ryan
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No big deal,
buy 24", get 2' of 1/2" copper and fem adapter. Solder them together. Thread faucet in. Viola 4' faucet.
Brian
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What he wants is to have the valve portion of the faucet inside the house where it is warm. The water beyond the valve, closer to the outside, will drain out even if the fauce is off. He's trying to prevent the pipes from freezing.
I wish I had these things in my house. I forgot to drain the pipe this year and it's been down to 15 degrees several nights,
I don't think it froze however.
Do you folkx think it gets cold enough in Baltimore to split the pipe of a heated house? Or will the warmth of the basement be enough to counteract the cold of the outside?
I can't believe all my neighbors remember to do this every year, and I've never heard the local new remind anyone.

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mm wrote:

Definitely gets cold enough to cause problems, but there are a lot of variables, so it's hard to tell from here whether yours is likely to freeze or not. I'd assume it will.

I guarantee you'll never have to be reminded again after the pipe freezes and bursts.
R
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@bigfoot.com says...

Depends on the individual installation, insulation quality, how warm you keep the house, etc.
I can tell you it got cold enough south of Seattle this week to split a bronze sillcock. Around 19 degrees.
Always remove the hose from frost-free faucets, or the hose can hold water in the part that's supposed to be dry, and you'll split that part of it. The one lucky part is that the split is downstream from the valve, so it doesn't gush water as soon as it thaws.
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Ryan Born wrote:

Frost free faucets come in several different length. No problem with 2.5" wall. I installed thru 7" thick wall out at my cabin. What really is, the seat is located way inside from faucet end and when you install it, it is little tilted downward by way of beveled mounting gasket to help water to drain when it is closed. I am in Alberta, I bet it gets colder than there. I think I saw 16" long one at HD. Tony
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Obviously you got to this one before I reposted saying 2.5' (FEET) thick wall. Thanks for your attempt! -Ryan
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I don't understand what difference the wall thickness makes anyway. You buy the frost free faucet, solder it onto the end of a pipe (or screw in on with a threaded fitting) then you run the pipe through the wall hole from the outside and solder it on the inside supply pipe. After all copper pipe comes in standard 10' lengths.
Are you afraid the wall is going to freeze 12" back from the outside surface? Stone might, depending on what is on the inside surface, but it probably wouldn't. If you are worried, wrap the pipe with a heater tape from the frost-free connection to the inside wall when you install it and add a convenient switch to turn it on and off (one with a lock). Or, make the hole large enough that you can cover the pipe (from the outside surface to the inside wall with the standard tubular pipe insulation. The insulation wouldn't use power but would allow heat to travel from the inside down the pipe to keep it from freezing.
A better solution would be to relocate the supply pipe to the faucet underground or through a thinner wall.
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I would check with a large plumbing supply in your area and see what the longest freeze proof sillcock they could order is. There might be a commercial/industrial type product that would be longer than the typical home ones. However, you may not need one that extends all the way inside. I'm pretty sure I've seen them as long as 16 or 18 inchs. If you got that far into the wall, and had it well sealed up on the outside, I would think it wouldn't freeze. To do that, you'd have to go use the screw threads and use a female adaptor on the pipe which would end mid wall.
If you're not in a hurry, you could use one of the remote thermometers that have a wire probe attached to do some monitoring this winter of how cold it gets inside the wall. Then you'd know.
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Be aware that frost free faucets are available with and without the anti-siphon feature. The code here requires all outside faucets to be anti-siphon. I hired licensed plumber, he didn't get a permit, it wasn't inspected and he put in one that isn't anti-siphon. It doesn't meet the code but I don't expect any problem because the inspectors here aren't any smarter than the plumbers.
Bob
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