I ran a cpvc pipe through a cinder block exterior wall to put a spigot in. I don't really have access to the inside of that painted cinder block wall where the pipe enters the cinder block. It just got really cold here and I forgot to cut the supply of water to the spigot from the inside cut off. I turned on the spigot and nothing came out. The spigot is sealed around it with caulk.

Basically I think my pipe froze and thawed but I'm not seeing any signs of leaking. How can I know if it is actually leaking?

  • The sign of a leak is always the same, WATER! – Steven Feb 26 '15 at 19:08

Turn off all faucets, and devices in the home that might use water. This includes, but is not limited to ice makers, dishwashers, clothes washers, faucets, running toilets, etc.

Use a little piece of tape, one of those "sign here" stickers, or something similar to mark the water meter reading (or if it's digital, just write down the reading). Don't use any water for an hour or two, then go back and check the meter. If it's changed, you either have a leak, or forgot to turn something off that used water.

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Water, or the sound of water. Leave the outside valve open, shut the inside valve. Wait for warmer weather.

Once it warms up, open the inside valve. If water flows, shut the outside valve. Then shut the inside valve. Listen for the sound of flowing water when you open the inside valve again (assuming you don't hear or see it flowing in a more obvious manner when you go inside to close the inside valve.)

A better fix for the long run would be to replace the whole section of pipe and spigot with a frost-free sillcock - basically an outside faucet with the valve located on the inside, and a very long valve stem. Those do need to be angled slightly downward so they drain properly.

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  • A frost-proof sillcock is a great investment. I installed one last year, and it works great. I had to drill through a fieldstone foundation that was over a foot thick, which was no easy task. – Jason Hutchinson Feb 26 '15 at 21:28

Looking for water signs or using your ears to discover leaks are highly unreliable methods. I would suggest that you hire a contractor to test it. Maybe it costs more money but when it comes to leaking pipes you really shouldn't spare money, and really it’s not that expensive. What he does: he empties the pipes and then fills them with pressured air and put measurer on one and of the pipe. After day or so I forgot if the pressure is lower than originally you have a leak. Rest is easy. :)

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