View Full Version : Do I need a plumber to unstick a hose from a faucet?

04-03-2003, 01:30 PM
I bought a new washing machine, but I can't get the old hose unfastened from the hose bib (ie, fawcet). I called my handiest friend who brought his wrench, pliers and WD-40 and we still couldn't get it unstuck. If we pulled any harder, we feared we would rip the hose bibs from the wall. The house is 50 years old and the plumbing is the same.

Is this something that I need to call a plumber to fix? Do I need to get new fawcets? Any advice on how to get the hose unstuck? Will I be doomed to wearing dirty underwear until I can save the cash to afford a plumber?


04-03-2003, 01:46 PM
You've probably got mineral buildup inside the threads of the connection. Try soaking it overnight in a bucket of vinegar.

Patty O'Furniture
04-03-2003, 01:51 PM
A wrench and WD-40 should be all the mechanical advantage you need. Try cooling down the fawcet with an ice cube and then heating up the stuck part that attaches to the old hose.

In the mean time, wash your underwear by hand in the bathroom sink.

04-03-2003, 02:13 PM
Instead of standard pliers, you might try a pair of vice-grips, which will tighten down and not slip off of the hose. After a liberal application of WD-40, of course.

04-03-2003, 02:21 PM
Forget the WD-40 and go get some penetrating oil. It is designed for this. WD-40 is not, I don't care what it's label says.

04-03-2003, 02:55 PM
Ok, I read the title of this thread and thought it was about a horse getting stuck in a faucet. Carry on.

04-03-2003, 03:10 PM
Use the right tool for the job, which is channellock pliers aka waterpump pliers.


04-03-2003, 03:40 PM
Don't forget to use a second set of pliers on the valve (probably called a boiler valve), or you will need a plumber. I made this mistake when I had the same problem, and kinked the pipe behind the wall. I had to cut a hole in the wall and get my soldering skills up to speed so I could replace a section of copper pipe. You don't want to put pressure on the plumbing behing the wall, just the connection.

I'd use a pipe wrench to take off the old hose. It doesn't require the same squeezing action regular pliers do, which in this case is very much your enemy. Obviously, pushing harder on the threads isn't going to make this any easier to come off.

If pliers or a pipe wrench don't work, use a dremmel tool or a hack saw on the part of the hose that attaches to the threads (they don't do anything in this application except hold the hose on). Cut down until you see the threads on the fitting. Then pry off with a screwdriver. A little nick in the threads won't hurt anything, since the rubber washer is what keeps this connection from leaking.

That being said, I'd probably just shut off the water and replace the whole valve (assuming it's a threaded fitting, as soldered connection complicates things a bit). Changes are, it's not in good shape and will leak anyway when you turn it back on. Sure you can fix this but tightening down the packing nut, but for a couple of bucks, why bother? If you really want to do it right, replace both hot and cold with a washing machine valve that shuts off the water with the flip of a lever. That way you can shut off water between uses and not worry about hoses bursting. At the very least, use braided washing machine hoses (the ones that came with your machine are junk).

04-03-2003, 03:55 PM
If you really want to do it right, replace both hot and cold with a washing machine valve that shuts off the water with the flip of a lever.

Or get a machine that has only a cold-water hose and heats the water... although it sounds a bit late for that.

Good luck. There's nothing worse than being halfway through a project and hitting a major snag.

Don't just soak it overnight in a bucket of vinegar - sit on the sofa in your dirty underwear and have a six-pack while it's soaking!

04-03-2003, 04:08 PM
Originally posted by j.c.
Don't just soak it overnight in a bucket of vinegar - sit on the sofa in your dirty underwear and have a six-pack while it's soaking! -Sorry, I thought that was implied :D

Uncommon Sense
04-03-2003, 04:40 PM
Where there`s a will there is a way.

If you don`t get the thing unstuck by trying the above methods (I would use CLR instead of vinegar) take a hacksaw and lightly score the outside of the stuck piece. Cut parrallel with the pipe and try to score the metal just enough so that you can crack the piece in half with the channellocks or vice-grip. Don`t cut too deep into the threads of the bib itself. If you do score the threads on the bib in this manner you can always use a little pipe dope on the fitting when you install the new hose. Even scored a little they won`t leak, you just don`t want to cut through the bib.

Rob V
04-03-2003, 06:09 PM
And while you're waiting for whatever goo to penetrate the stuck threads, do yourself a favor and go to the hardware store and buy some of those steel-braided washing machine hoses!! DO NOT use the cheap rubber ones that come with the new machine, unless you LIKE bailing water outta your house.

Monopoly Money
04-03-2003, 07:03 PM
Squirt some '3 in 1' oil in there and give it 24 hours to work.

04-03-2003, 07:19 PM
I'd use some heat. That works wonderful. Next I might cut it off if it's a hose I can change.

You don't suppose it might turn the other way? I know that sounds weird but I have seen it.

04-04-2003, 12:47 PM
Like Kalashnikov says, get a pair of channel locks, use them to give a good firm squeeze all the way around the connection and that should loosen it up so it will unscrew easier.

04-04-2003, 12:58 PM
handy raises a good point. Are you remembering "leftie-loosey, rightie-tighty?" And then are you remembering that it goes the other way around, because the connection is probably upside-down?

Personally, I consider the likelihood of left-handed threads rather remote.

Good luck with it, anyway.

Oh, and welcome to the SDMB.

04-04-2003, 01:02 PM
Heat it up with a propane torch, then use a pipe wrench (http://doityourself.com/store/6051494.htm) Don't over heat. Applying heat makes the calcium build-up gooey instead of hard. You have to try to apply the heat evenly, which can be difficult on the underside.

Another possibility is the original installer, in a time before teflon tape, used solder to seal the threads. Heat is needed in this case as well.

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