top of page

How to properly drain the outdoor faucet in the winter?

Updated: Oct 30, 2022

Every year, when the weather turns cold, it is important to know how to drain the outdoor faucet properly. This will prevent freezing and bursting pipes. The outdoor faucet is a common fixture in many homes. It is used to water the plants, wash the car, and fill up the pool. When the weather turns cold, indoor water pipes can quickly freeze. The outside faucet is not immune to freezing either. If you don't want it to burst, you have to drain the water from it when the temperature drops below freezing.


Outdoor faucets should be drained when temperatures drop below freezing (0°C), and indoor pipes should also be drained when they freeze. Some homeowners in areas that have repeating cycles of freezing and thawing may have a leaky outdoor faucet all winter long!



The water will stay in the faucet and become stagnant when the weather turns cold; as a result, it could freeze or break your pipes. When winter is coming, you should use a method appropriate for your situation to drain the water from your outdoor faucet.


Here are the 5 steps for draining the water out of your outside water faucets for the winter:


STEP 1: Close inside valve Looking for the inside valve in your home, then shut it off


STEP 2: Drain inside valve Unscrew the drain plug from the inside valve. Then, you need to put a bucket under this inside valve and unscrew the small drain plug on the side of this valve. Water in the valve will drain out.


STEP 3: Disconnect the garden hose (if there).


STEP 4: Open the outside valve Allow any trapped water out, then close it.


STEP 5: Put back the drain plug on the inside valve.

Be sure there is nothing that covers the inside valve


The best time to drain the faucet is two weeks before the first average freeze. The following are some steps you should follow to do it correctly:


If you have a garden hose, use it to drain the water out of the outdoor faucet. A garden hose is more flexible than a standard hose and can reach difficult areas. If you don't have a garden hose, use a standard hose to connect to your outdoor faucet and run it inside your house to an appropriate drain. The water will be warm but not hot enough to cause damage or injury if you touch it with your hands or feet.


How to prevent frozen water pipes?

  1. Cover water pipes with insulation foam or wrap them with electric heating tape.

  2. Cover both hot and cold pipes with insulation foam, but put more on cold pipes.

If it has been raining for days, a high-pressure outdoor faucet may be releasing rusty particles into the dirt. Expert advice is to apply anti-rustic treatment before use. But even after this, it's recommended that you drain the cold water every year. The idea behind it is that damp concrete blocks at the other end where drinking water comes out of the faucet react with oxygen, creating water and rust particles during the winter months when temperatures dip below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Via EPA, we know that heavy rains can release lead particles into the fluid. Therefore draining your outdoor faucets properly can help prevent bacteria and bacteria from growing inside your pipes and the house.


Water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit (~0°C), and when it does, it expands. This can lead to a build-up of pressure that can cause the pipes to burst. To prevent this, turn off the outdoor faucet and allow the water to drain out before turning the faucet back on.


Contact Local Rooter


If you would like a free quote on drain cleaning in San Jose and surrounding areas, our professional plumbers at Local Rooter are here to solve your problems. Call us at 408-641-9245 or contact us here


64 views0 comments

Comments