Preventative destruction of a frost-free hose bib

What would you do if some dumb guy (in this case, me) left a hosepipe connected to a faucet with a frost-free bib and it was currently the middle of winter?
Would you say,
(1) "there is a possibility of the fixture cracking and causing an in-the-wall leak when spring rolls around, so pray that it does not happen or at least keep a look out for it"
Or
(2) "There is a very high probability of the fixture cracking and causing an in-the-wall leak, so let me use a torch now to thaw the ice in the hosepipe and in the connection so that I can disconnect the hosepipe and pull out the stem. Then I will turn off the connection to the main water supply so that it cannot leak in Spring. Once spring arrives I will simply reinsert a new stem, reopen the connection and Bob's your uncle - all set."
Or
(3) The same as (2) above except with the last sentence being "Once spring arrives I will need to open the drywall so that I can replace the whole fixture. The trauma of cutting a whole in the drywall will make it difficult for me to ever forget to disconnect the hosepipe again.
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If it had water in it for whatever reason and froze solid, it's likely split. Dan is right, no need to do anything right away. The part that is split is after the valve. Typically these can be removed without disturbing walls, as they usually go through the wall to a basement, etc. Some unscrew, others are soldered in. I had one go from leaving a hose on and didn't even realize it till spring when i tried to use it.
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The unit is made to not leak until you try to use it. If the "barrel" is split, it will leak as the water goes through it. It will cease to leak when you close the valve assuming the faucet washer is in good repair. The split in the barrel can be soldered shut unless it is huge.
Choices: Pray that it didn't split and watch and listen or drill small hole in drywall to inspect.
Assume it split and that it may split again the next time you forget and get one of the inexpensive plastic doors made to provide access to plumbing problems. Can be installed in such a manner to not require drywall compound or paint. Inspect or replace the freezeless as required.
(top posted for your convenience) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Keep the whole world singing . . . . DanG (remove the sevens) snipped-for-privacy@7cox.net

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Farrel wrote:

If the end of the hose was open, you're almost surely safe...even if not, it would be much more likely to split a hose than the bib.
I'd be surprised you couldn't take a pair of pliers and remove the hose even now w/o full thawing out...
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Just out of curiosity, are you implying that you are in the middle of winter right now, and if so, where abouts in this world are you located? How cold is it?
I'm just wondering.
Relz
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If there's water in the bib when it froze, it'll split. Doesn't matter whether the end of the hose/bib is open, or that other parts of the "circuit" are stretchy.
In other words, the water doesn't have to be "contained" to have the pipe split, it just needs to freeze in a rigid part of the plumbing.
We had a frost-free bib with no hose whatsoever on it. It had been installed wrong, so there was a slight slant (outer end up), which led to a small pocket of water in the barrel when valve was shut.
The barrel split.
--
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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Relz wrote:

I am in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is not currently freezing and we had fantastic spring weather for the past 2 weeks. However, the problem of the attached hose pipe was discovered in December. The thought process that I was asking about took place in December. I am reflecting on the decision that was taken then.
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