Outdoor Faucet Leaks When Turned on – Expert Tips To Stop

For outdoor water activities such as gardening, washing the car, and cleaning outdoor space, an outdoor faucet is a good option. In many houses, people use outdoor faucets to get water outside quickly. However, a common and frustrating issue that homeowners often encounter is their outdoor faucet leaks when turned on.

This leak happens in the outside area so people ignore it but if you don’t repair it at time, it damages the surrounding area and increases the water bill. Some common culprits for outdoor faucet leaks are worn-out washers, loose connections, damaged O-rings, and corroded valve seats. When these parts are not in the well condition, results in a leak in the outside faucet. Maybe you are thinking to call a plumber but wait sometimes fixes are easier than you think.

Why Outdoor Faucet Leaks When Turned On?

Outdoor Faucet Leaks When Turned on
Outdoor Faucet Leaks When Turned on
  1. Worn-out washer: The washer is a small rubber or plastic ring located inside the outdoor faucet handle. Over time, constant usage can cause the washer to deteriorate, resulting in leaks. When the outside faucet is turned on, water pushes against the worn-out washer, creating gaps and allowing water to escape.
  2. Loose connections: Outdoor faucets have various connection points, including the spout, handle, and pipe fittings. If any of these connections become loose, water can seep through the gaps and cause leaks when the outside faucet is turned on. Loose connections may occur due to improper installation, regular usage, or exposure to extreme weather conditions.
  3. Damaged O-ring: An O-ring is a small rubber ring located inside the faucet’s spout or handle, providing a watertight seal. If the O-ring gets damaged or worn out, it can lead to leaks. When the faucet is turned on, water can bypass the damaged O-ring and escape through the gaps, resulting in a leaky faucet.
  4. Corroded valve seat: The valve seat is a metal component located inside the faucet body, providing a sealing surface for the faucet’s internal mechanism. Over time, mineral deposits and corrosion can accumulate on the valve seat, causing it to become uneven and preventing a proper seal. As a result, water can leak out when the outdoor faucet is turned on.

Fix The Leak of Outdoor Faucet

Fix The Leak of Outdoor Faucet
Fix The Leak of Outdoor Faucet

Replace Worn-out Washer

Turn off the water supply to the outdoor faucet. To access the worn-out washer, you need to remove the handle of it. For this, you need either a screwdriver or an appropriate tool according to the handle design.

Remove the screw of the handle and set it aside so later you can reuse it. after removing the screw, push the handle outside to remove it. When the handle comes outside, remove its cartridge to see the worn-out washer.

If the washer is damaged, you should replace it. You should get an exact matching cartridge from the hardware store. Install the new washer in the place of old one. Carefully reassemble the faucet by securing the stem or cartridge back into place. Make sure it is tightened properly but avoid overtightening.

Tightening Loose Connections

Inspect the connection between the outdoor faucet and or hose. Check any visible signs of looseness, gaps, or misalignment. If there are any water stains or moisture around the connections, they are also an indication of the leak.

To tighten the outdoor faucet connections, you need a wrench or plier. The specific tool required depends on the type of connection and the size of the fittings. To avoid any damage to the connection, use the right tool.

If the leak appears to be coming from the connection point between the faucet and the pipe or hose, start by securing the faucet side of the connection. Hold the faucet steady with one hand to prevent it from turning while you tighten the connection.

Use your other hand, to make a firm grip on the pipe or hose, and use a wrench or plier to carefully tighten in the clockwise direction.

Once you’ve tightened the connection, turn on the water supply and check for leaks. Keep an eye on the connection point and observe if any water droplets or drips appear. If you notice any leaks, try tightening the connection a bit more.

Replace O-ring

Replace O-ring
Replace O-ring

Get a screwdriver, an Allen key, a new O-ring, an adjustable plier or wrench, towel, when you replace the damaged O-ring.

  • If there is a drain under the outdoor faucet, cover it with a towel to ensure you don’t lose any parts.
  • Take a Philips screwdriver to unthread the screw of the handle. If your outside faucet has a hex screw, use an Allen key to remove it.
  • Remove the handle and keep it in a safe place.
  • To remove the O-ring, you need to remove the valve stem of the faucet. For this remove the screw of the valve stem. For this plier or wrench is a good tool.
  • When the screw is removed, lift the valve and remove it from the faucet.
  • Now the O-ring is visible. Take it out and check its condition and replace it with a new one.
  • Make sure you align tabs and grooves as needed for a snug fit.
  • Now tighten the valve and reattach the handle.
  • Tighten the screw of the handle with the screwdriver.

Cleaning or Replacing a Corroded Valve Seat

  • As shown in the previous steps, remove the handle to access the valve seat.
  • Look for signs of corrosion or damage on the valve seat, which is located deep inside the faucet body.
  • If the valve seat is only slightly corroded, you can try cleaning it with a soft brush or cloth and a mild cleaning solution. Remove any debris or mineral deposits carefully.
  • If the valve seat is severely corroded or damaged, it’s best to replace it. Take note of the specific type and size of the valve seat and purchase a suitable replacement from a hardware store. Install the new valve seat securely.
  • Put the faucet handle back into position, securing it with screws or bolts.
  • Turn on the water supply and check if the faucet still leaks. If the leak persists, consider other potential causes or seek professional help.

Other Potential Fixes

Use Plumber Tape

In the case of a minor leak, you can use the plumber tape to stop the leak. Plumber tape is a quick solution to stop leaks for a while. Plumber tape works better on the threaded connections of the outdoor faucet.

When you apply the plumber tape to the outside faucet connections, it will create a watertight seal and no gap is remaining for the water to leak. Wrap the tape around the threaded parts of the faucet before reassembling the faucet.

Take Plumber Help

You have tried all the above methods but still, your outdoor faucet leaks when turned on, you should call a plumber to fix the issue.

Plumbers with their experience will identify the actual issue of the faucet. They will easily find out what you are missing because they regularly solve plumbing issues in different houses. They will give you the right advice to fix the outside faucet leaks. You should ask the plumber to charge first because their charge may be high than the cost of a new outdoor faucet.

Read also –


Outdoor Faucet Leaks
Outdoor Faucet Leaks

Can I Fix a Cracked Pipe on My Own?

Repairing a cracked pipe can be a challenging task that often requires specialized tools and expertise. It is generally recommended to seek professional assistance for repairing or replacing a cracked pipe to ensure a proper and lasting fix.

How Often Should I Winterize My Outdoor Faucet?

It is best to winterize your outside faucet before the temperatures drop below freezing. In most areas, this is done once a year, usually in the late fall or early winter. The frequency, however, may vary depending on your individual climate and weather conditions.

What Should I Do If The Water Pressure Is Low In My Outdoor Faucet?

Several causes can contribute to low water pressure in an outdoor faucet. Begin by inspecting the faucet aerator for any obstructions or debris and cleaning it as needed. If the problem persists, it may be the result of a problem with the water supply line or a valve. In such circumstances, a professional plumber should be consulted to identify and resolve the low water pressure problem.

Final Thoughts

If you notice that your outdoor faucet leaks when turned on, it’s important to take it seriously. Ignoring the issue can lead to significant damage to your property. The good news is that fixing a leaking outdoor faucet is not a difficult task, and this guide will help you with the process. Regardless of the size of the leak, it’s important to address it promptly. Leaks are not only inconvenient for you but also have negative effects on the environment. So, make sure to repair the leak as soon as possible.

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