We bought a house recently. The backyard has a faucet that is leaking (at the connection between pipe and faucet). looks like the previous owner tried to fix it too and in the process did the following:

  • Bent/Mangled the water pipe (Looks like I have to tear the wall to fix this. So, wont fix this ever)
  • Broke the threads from the water pipe to the faucet (probably)
  • Broke the stucco off the wall (I wont fix this now)

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I want to remove the faucet and put some plumbers tape. When I try to remove the faucet, it just goes round and round. It does not come out because the threads of the pipe are gone. Any suggestions? How can I fix the leak without removing the faucet?

  • 1
    Looks like a compression fitting. Put one pipe wrench on the spigot, and another on the nut just behind it. While holding the spigot still, turn the nut to loosen the connection.
    – Tester101
    Jul 3, 2012 at 13:05
  • 1
    What exactly goes round and round, and what are you trying to turn? That sure looks like a compression fitting and you will need to hold the faucet with one wrench and remove the nut that is closest to the wall with another wrench. If the compression nut is loose but not off, the faucet would indeed just spin around.
    – Dave Nay
    Jul 3, 2012 at 13:06
  • 1
    A piece of copper pipe won't be threaded. There are no threads to worry about, and none that were stripped. There are two possibilities. Either the fitting was soldered onto the pipe, or it uses a compression fitting. Solder is eliminated because the valve turns freely now. So this is a compression fitting (as others have said already.) Assuming that the whole mess is now not so beat up to be useable, tighten the nut against the body of the valve. Use two wrenches to do so, and try not to damage the pipe even more.
    – user558
    Jul 3, 2012 at 13:53

2 Answers 2


As the comments have pointed out, that is a compression fitting and not a threaded fitting. Removing it should be relatively easy. Loosen the nut by holding the valve with one wrench and turning the nut with another. Once it is loose enough, the valve should just pull off the pipe.

You will have to examine the exposed portion of pipe once you remove the valve to determine if you can re-use the pipe and valve as-is or if you need to cut it inside and install a new stub that you can then install a new valve on. I doubt you will be able to re-use it (its damaged already, hence the leak), so in all likelihood, you will have to replace it. If you do replace it, get a ball valve (1/4 turn) as they are more reliable and easier to operate.

Hopefuly you have an inside shutoff valve for this. If you don't, you will want to ensure you have everything you need before starting this project as the water to your house will be off. If you do have a shutoff then just close it and you can take as much time as you'd like.

Note that you should not use pipe tape or dope on compressing fittings.


Since you're outside and dealing with water on stucko, heat should work. A little blow torch and a few minutes should do the trick -- also pull in the direction it should come off and just keep spinning it. Sometimes the threads will catch JUST ENOUGH to get it out of there.

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