I recently replaced a water softener unit at my house. I wanted to add a hose outlet for soft water to rinse off the car. I was wondering if there are any code issues with adding a garden hose bib via a tee to the soft water side of the water loop?

Here's a picture of what I did:

garden hose bib on water loop

  • Is that a brass tee? You have to be careful about using brass in your home's water supply because it may contain lead. Are there any plumbers here who can say if the parts in the photo are okay or not?
    – mrog
    Sep 12, 2018 at 20:49
  • 1
    @mrog thanks for the concern. I made sure to buy lead free and potable water rated T and hose bibb. Hopefully amazon wasn't lying to me! :) Sep 21, 2018 at 0:03

2 Answers 2


I see no problem with using softened water to rinse your car with. You do understand that it will cause you softener to cycle slightly more often and use a bit more rock salt. It that valve accidentally gets used to water the lawn then the cost could be noticeable.

  • To clarify, I'm asking whether adding a tee with a garden hose bib to the house side of a water loop is allowed. I've heard about pretty obscure regulations such as outdoor irrigation systems need backflow prevention valves. Not a plumber myself or too knowledgeable in this area, I wanted to ask if the piping I installed against regulation or code or if I needed to install the tee further down the line or something like that. Mar 20, 2018 at 6:24
  • I think the answer was yes, I don't see any issue with a T then another bib.+
    – Ed Beal
    Sep 12, 2018 at 20:28
  • You might need to consult a local expert to determine what kind of backflow prevention you'll need, if any.
    – mrog
    Sep 12, 2018 at 21:08

Most "lead free" fittings have NL markings on them.

As far as backflow, a vacuum breaker should be all you need, just like on the outside hose bibs.

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