I have a frost free tap coming outside at the basement level, a few feet below my first floor. I have problems going up and down the deck stairs so was looking for an alternative to extend the tap up the wall to the first level, reachable from the deck. I was told by the plumber that it would no longer be frost free and would need bleeding every fall. I am trying to avoid that.

I have previously run a hose up from the tap to the deck, kept under pressure (the tap turned on so I don't have to go up and down the stairs a couple of times a day), but in the last 6 years, I have had hoses burst (by some stroke of luck I was there both times when it happened), so I am looking for more of a "hard wired" alternative.

I'd appreciate any ideas you may have.

  • Unless wanting to use it in cold weather, bleeding does not take that long. Close off the frost free tap, open the bleeder and the top tap to let the water out. Frost free taps work the same way, close off the water in the warm place and let the water left in the pipe, out though the outside tap(bleeding).
    – crip659
    May 19, 2023 at 19:48
  • 1
    Or you can leave the hose full of water on the frost free tap so it doesn't drain, and get a big leaky surprise in the spring (actually not me, but friends did that.)
    – Ecnerwal
    May 19, 2023 at 20:32
  • 2
    Sounds like you should just buy a new hose every other year. Other solutions will be a lot more expensive and complicated. All you need to do is remove the hose every winter, so that's 2 trips up the stairs per year instead of day. Also, steel-clad hoses tend to last longer, so 3 years with them.
    – dandavis
    May 20, 2023 at 5:42
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    – isherwood
    Jun 19, 2023 at 21:05

4 Answers 4


Just plumb in a new frost-free tap from a pipe that comes up (or already is) inside the house to the appropriate level. Leave the other one alone.

  • Ecnerwal: The deck runs along the living room wall, which is brick on the outside. Basement is unfinished. Is it easy to add a new tap through a brick wall and down into the basement, or would that be a lot of work or require access from the living room wall...?
    – user167087
    May 20, 2023 at 1:22

You could just do some schedule 40 pvc pipe with solvent to FIP adapters then fit the two ends of the pvc with MIP to male hose bib then you just add a boiler drain hose between the section of your pvc and your frost free. The other side gets the deck hose. Maybe this is what the plumber was imagining.

Before winter just disconnect your short boiler drain hose (female/female) and assuming the deck is higher than the frost free hose bib all the water will gravity drain out of your pvc extension. Irrigation stuff works this way - you'd probably also want a shutoff at your deck level so you can leave your frost free one pressurized and not have to go down to turn on or off unless you want to just rely on the hose spray head.

PVC pipe, fittings, glue will be a few hundred dollars but likely a lot cheaper than doing a new frost free pipe at deck level and modifying the inside of your house for a new water supply.

  • I think I understand what you are saying ... the plumber said the existing frost free tap could not be reused, they would plumb with copper into the house and then up the wall to the higher location, but this could not include a way to drain it in the exterior. I could do the draining on the inside by hiring someone each year as I'm not able, I just preferred the frost free version which (I understand) does not require draining.
    – user167087
    May 20, 2023 at 1:25
  • The pvc setup would go on the outside and wouldn't really require a plumber so could be done cheaply. Inside with new pipes you have the plumbing work, drywall, vapor barrier, painting and probably trim work and possibly siding. Depends on your budget. May 20, 2023 at 15:27

Any freeze resistant sillcock (which is what the "frost free tap" is actually called) that is worth a spit is going to be 12" to 18" long. So unless you have ample depth where you are thinking of putting it you are not going to be able to. Typically where they are placed is in the space between 2 floors or there is a wall that is perpendicular to the exterior wall they are going into. you DO NOT want to run any water pipes along the inside of an exterior wall. This is because of the possibility of the freezing and rupturing. Water would end up all over the inside of your house if that happens. You need to really look at where you are wanting to put the thing to see if there is any way to get a water line up to that place without running aa pipe inside of an exterior wall.

A lot of times a deck is off the kitchen area of a home and depending on where the kitchen sink is located you might be able to run the water line from there. You might have a cabinet the sillcock can run into possibly have a sacrificial bottom drawer and run the water line through the backs of the cabinets to the sink.It all depends on placement.

  • Thank you for your thoughts, I appreciate the time you took to answer my question.
    – user167087
    May 20, 2023 at 17:52
  • Hopefully I described it in a manner that makes it easier to understand why it is not an easy thing to relocate.
    – user165826
    May 26, 2023 at 17:17

Every frost-free faucet needs to have the attached hoses (or an equivalent fitting) removed every winter to allow the faucet to drain, there is no getting around that. But instead of using a garden hose to bring the water up to your deck, you could use stainless-steel braided washing machine supply hoses instead. They have the same hose thread ends as garden hoses, and they will assuredly not burst in the middle of the night or while you're away. They can also be combined to reach any length using male hose thread nipples, and have a valve attached at the upper end.

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