How to Fix a Leaking Garden Hose
Where is your garden hose leaking from? The location of the leak will define how you'll fix that leaking garden hose. Before you call a plumber or run out to replace your garden hose, try these DIY solutions to fix a leaky garden hose.
If it is leaking from the faucet (hose bib): The stem of the faucet is attached to the pipe with a nut. It's called a "packing nut". If the stem of faucet itself is leaking, tighten the packing nut with a wrench. Tighten it until it stops. If that does not work, loosen the packing nut and pull it toward you (away from the house). Take about 8 inches of Teflon tape and wrap it around the stem of the faucet in the place where the packing nut usually sits. Then push the packing nut back into place, and tighten it. It's also possible that the main washer inside the hose bib is worn out and needs to be replaced. To replace the main washer of a hose bib, turn off the water from the source. Then open the spigot and let the water drain out. Unscrew the packing nut and pull the whole hose bib out of the wall. At one end you'll have the hose bib's handle, and at the other end you'll see the washer. With a screwdriver, unscrew the washer and remove it. Replace the washer and put the screw back in; then tighten the screw. Insert the hose bib back into the wall, and screw the handle in. Tighten the nut.
If the garden hose is leaking from the hose connector: The first solution is to change the gasket. While your garden hose probably came with a flat gasket, changing a worn out flat gasket with an o-ring should create a much better seal. If that does not do the job, you might need to replace the hose end. To replace a hose end, snip off the existing hose end. You'll need a hose barb kit. The kit will include a clamp and the actual hose barb. Stick the clamp on the hose first. Slip the hose barb into the end of the hose. You can use a little drop of dish detergent to lubricate the barb end. Once the barb is in, slide the clamp up to the middle of the barb and tighten it with a screwdriver.
If there is a hole in the garden hose: With garden shears, cut the damaged section of the hose off. This involves actually severing your hose into parts. Once you've cut off the damaged part of the hose, you are going to install a hose repair kit. A hose repair kit contains two clamps and a coupler. Slide the clamp onto one end of the hose. Now slide the coupler into that end, and slide the clamp down over the coupler. Tighten the screws on the clamp with a screwdriver. Do the same thing on the other end. This is more effective than trying to seal up the hole in a garden hose with epoxy or glue.
In very cool news: The city of Dallas is offering assistance with small plumbing repairs in Dallas, including fixing hose bibs, via their Minor Plumbing Repair Program. Since fixing a hose bib is a water-saving measure, check to find out if your municipality offers assistance or incentives through the water utility department.
Chaya Kurtz writes for Networx.com.