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Your hose bibb, or outside spigot, is the faucet located on the exterior of your house. Do you know where you connect a garden hose? Yup, that’s your hose bibb. In winter, homeowners in colder climates need to turn off the water to their hose bibbs to prevent damage and flooding when the weather drops below freezing.
Locate your hose bibb’s shutoff valve. If you have more than one hose bibb, each one will have its own shutoff valve. They will be located inside your house, usually in the basement, crawl space or utility room. If you know where your water meter is, that area is a great place to check first.
Now it’s time to cut off the flow of water. If your shutoff valve is a gate valve, it will look like a small wheel. Turn the wheel clockwise until it won’t go any further. If you have a ball valve, turn the handle so that it's perpendicular to the supply line.
Go outside and detach your hose from the spigot. It’s a good idea to remove as much water as possible from the hose before storing it for the winter. The best place to store your hose is in a heated, protected area such as your basement or shed.
Once your hose is put away, turn on the hose bibb and let any excess water run out. Leave the hose bibb open during the winter in case your shutoff valve leaks and allows water to reenter the system.
Head back to your shutoff valve and look for the bleeder valve, which is usually located underneath the shutoff valve and has a small metal cap. Hold a small bowl beneath the bleeder valve and remove the cap. A small amount of excess water should drain out. Replace the cap on the bleeder valve and tighten it.
Your system is ready for winter!
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