Access to water outside your home is invaluable for gardening, washing cars, filling pools, and much more. But installing a standard indoor faucet outside leaves it susceptible to freezing temperatures, rain, snow and other elements.
Choosing an outdoor spigot explicitly designed to withstand the weather is critical. This article will explore the different types of outdoor taps available and provide tips on selecting and properly installing weather-resistant outdoor faucets so you can conveniently access water for all your exterior needs.
Why You Need an Outdoor Faucet
An outdoor faucet provides easy access to water for numerous tasks outside your home. You can conveniently water your lawn, garden, flowers and other landscaping by connecting a hose or sprinkler to an exterior tap.
As outdoor taps are mainly used for irrigation, there is little point in placing flow restrictors or aerators on your outdoor taps as they will not do much to save water and may very well make irrigating your garden more difficult. An outdoor faucet near your driveway also simplifies washing vehicles like cars, boats and ATVs, allowing you to hose them down outside.
Outdoor taps are useful for filling swimming pools, cleaning outdoor furniture and equipment, and rinsing off pets after they’ve been outside. Installing an outdoor spigot gives you a convenient outdoor water source for all your exterior cleaning, washing and watering needs in one location.
What Taps to Use Outdoors
When selecting an outdoor faucet suitable for Australian weather conditions, you’ll want to consider factors such as heat, rain, and other outdoor elements. Here are a few different types of weather-resistant outdoor taps to choose from:
Heat-resistant spigots are designed to withstand high temperatures and intense sun exposure. They are made from materials that can handle the heat without warping or deteriorating. Heat-resistant spigots are ideal for hot climates.
Drought-tolerant faucets are designed to conserve water and withstand dry conditions. They often feature adjustable flow rates and water-saving mechanisms to help you minimise water usage during periods of water scarcity. Drought-tolerant faucets are suitable for arid climates.
Rainwater Harvesting Faucets
Rainwater harvesting faucets are specifically designed to collect and utilise rainwater. They often come with built-in filters and diverters to ensure the water collected is clean and suitable for various outdoor uses such as watering plants or cleaning. Rainwater harvesting faucets are beneficial in regions with frequent rainfall.
Portable Outdoor Taps
Portable outdoor faucets are versatile options that can be easily moved and positioned according to your needs. They typically connect to existing water sources and come with flexible hoses or attachments, allowing you to access water wherever it’s needed in your outdoor space. Portable faucets are convenient for various outdoor activities.
Built-in Outdoor Taps
Built-in outdoor faucets are permanently installed fixtures that are mounted directly onto exterior walls or surfaces. They are designed to withstand the elements and have tight seals to prevent water seepage. Built-in faucets often include safety features such as backflow prevention mechanisms to ensure clean and uncontaminated water.
Remember to consider the specific weather conditions in your area and choose an outdoor faucet that is best suited for your region’s climate.
Installing an Outdoor Tap
Properly installing an outdoor faucet is important for functionality and preventing weather damage. Follow these tips when setting up an outdoor spigot:
Extending the Water Line
You’ll likely need to extend your indoor water lines to feed water to the outdoor faucet. Copper, CPVC plastic, and galvanised, marine-grade stainless steel pipe are common options, as they are perfect for the great outdoors.
The pipe diameter should match the indoor plumbing. Install a shut-off valve on the line before the outdoor faucet to allow easy winterisation. The pipe run should take the shortest path outdoors to limit freeze risk.
Positioning and Mounting
Choose an exterior wall near an interior water source. Allow clearance for attachments like hoses and sprinklers. Mount the faucet securely to exterior siding or brick with galvanised screws into wall studs or masonry anchors. Ensure it is plumb and level. Caulk around the base to prevent air and water leaks.
Any water supply pipes or valves located in unheated indoor spaces like basements or crawl spaces should be insulated. Use foam tubing or rubber pipe insulation with adhesive backing.
This insulation should run the entire exposed pipe length. Insulation prevents condensation and protects pipes from freezing.
Enjoy the Convenience of Outdoor Water Access
Installing an outdoor faucet can provide great convenience and access to water for all your exterior home and garden needs. However, choosing a lead-free tapware made specifically for outdoor use is crucial for it to withstand the elements year-round.
Consider your climate and usage to select the right weather-resistant outdoor faucet option. Install the outdoor spigot properly by extending indoor plumbing lines, insulating unheated pipes, and winterising your system. With the proper outdoor faucet, you can conveniently access water for gardening, washing, swimming, and more outdoor activities without worrying about weather damage.
For professional installation or repairs of outdoor faucets in the Melbourne area, contact the experts at WP Plumbing. Our licensed and insured plumbers can help assess your outdoor water needs, recommend the right spigot solutions, and properly install your new outdoor tapware. Get in touch with us today to access outdoor water conveniently year after year.