You have a leaky garden hose, and you're not sure why. There may be multiple leaks: near the hose connector or from holes along the length of the hose. Perhaps it's the faucet that's causing a leak?
Whatever the reason, and wherever the leak is, there's no doubt that you have to fix it. But, unfortunately, duct tape and sheer will won't keep that hose from leaking. Even with the best garden hose on the market!
So, to avoid potential flooding, let's get to fixing that garden hose right away.
Check The Source Of The Leak
The first step is to identify the source of the leak. Then, a quick turn of the tap can point out where your hose needs to be fixed.
Depending on the location, you'll need to apply different methods and use various tools. Here are four possible places your hose might be leaking from and how to fix it.
1. Holes or cuts along the length of the hose
Pinholes, from punctures caused by any nails or sharp objects in your garden, are a common woe to all hose-owners. It might seem like your hose is forever sprouting a leak and that you've bought enough tape that it's time you owned some stock in it.
How to fix it
Most of the time, you won't even know they're there until it squirts you in the eye with water.
But, if you're in a pinch, you can always fix minor leaks with a rubber-based adhesive, PVC backing, or electrical duct tape. These tapes are elastic and weather-resistant, which means they'll plug your pin holes for a good while.
For more significant tears, rips, and gashes
If the leak is more significant than a hole and needs more than slapping some electrical tape on it and calling it a day, you can use a hose mender kit.
You can remove the affected area-use a pair of pliers or a utility knife-and replace it with the mender collar on either end of the hose, and twist it together firmly in place.
Your average garden store should be able to set you up with the right-sized hose mender.
Quick Tip: Avoid any future tears that can happen due to weak points caused by kinking. There are things you can do to prevent kinks in your hose.
2. Busted Gasket or Hose Washer
If your hose leaks from the nozzle or the area connecting the hose to the tap or fixture, there's a good possibility the washer should be replaced.
Washers are the little rubber rings you find on the inside of your nozzle or connector. Ideally, it would be best if you replaced your washer every year or two to avoid leaks. You can find them in your local hardware store for under a buck.
How to fix it
- First, uncork the nozzle head or the connector from the hose.
- Grab a pair of needle-nose pliers and pull out the washer that needs replacing.
- Then go ahead and settle your new washer in, and use a finger to push it in place.
- Reconnect the hose to the nozzle or tap and turn on the water to check how it works.
Pro Tip: Grab a garden hose repair kit which can seriously speed up the time it takes to fix a damaged hose. It has everything you need for that specific job, including a hoser cutter and clamp.
3. The connector end of the hose is damaged.
Remember when you detached the nozzle from the hose to replace the washer? Did you notice any damage or frayed ends on your hose? That's one reason to get leaks.
How to fix it
You can use a pair of standard pliers or hose pliers if you have them and just clip the damaged edge off. Or, you can use a utility knife.
- Place the hose against a hard, flat surface.
- Hold it in place with a weighted block or one hand.
- Cut the hose a few inches up from the ends. Make sure you cut through the tube evenly and not leave jagged ends.
- Reattach the hose to the connector and plug it back into the spigot or tap.
Open the tap to see if the leak has been dealt with. Yes? Then you're all good!
Quick note: If you have an expandable hose, it may be harder to repair. So in a lot of cases, it might just be worth it to buy a new hose.