House Hydrant Installation
The House Hydrant installs very similarly to a traditional sillcock. The standard threaded inlet accepts any type of plumbing adapter, and the Aquor connector attaches to any garden hose.
Watch a House Hydrant V1 installation on the TV show “Ask This Old House”:
(double-click to full screen)
1. Determine proper hydrant length
Measure the distance from the exterior of your home’s wall to where the hydrant will connect to your piping. Measure your House Hydrant from faceplate to end (including the 1/2″ NPT thread-in or push-fit adapter you’ll be using to connect to the supply line) and ensure that it will fit. In this case, we’ll be using a 12″ hydrant because we have plenty of space to work with. Mark your piping at the correct length, then use a pipe cutter or hacksaw to cut it. Place a bucket under the cut to catch any water left.
If you plan on using a mounting block (see step 2), make sure to account for the added thickness when deciding on a hydrant length.
2. Prepare exterior wall and entry hole
To install your new Aquor Hydrant, a 1-1/2” (39mm) entry hole is required. We recommend using a 1.5″ hole saw bit. You may need to enlarge the entry hole in your home’s wall if replacing an existing sillcock. Optimally, the center of the hole should be about an inch below the supply line to help water drain.
The House Hydrant V2 requires a larger entry hole to accommodate the vacuum breaker. You can use the same 1.5″ hole saw to drill a second hole just below the main entry. You do not have to follow our template exactly — just as long as it fits and seals the hole.
Below, the builder chose to use a rectangular entry. As long as the hydrant faceplate entirely covers the entry hole and is sealed against the wall, this is acceptable too.
Tips for exterior siding types:
The House Hydrant needs to be mounted on a surface that’s exactly 90° in order to drain properly. The debris cover included with your House Hydrant Kit has a 5° wedge to keep the hydrant at a slight downward angle. With lap siding, it’s important to use a mounting block or standoff for a flat surface. Mounting blocks (also referred to as escutcheons) can be store-bought inexpensively or made on-site with a piece of wood. Manufactured mounting blocks are readily available at stores, and can be made from vinyl or fiber cement.
Stucco, brick, brick-veneer:
A few suggested ideas:
Mounting blocks: Tapco Sturdimount mounting blocks provide a strong, flush surface for the House Hydrant to attach to. The two-piece design has a flange that tucks behind the siding for weatherproofing. We recommend the getting the blank version, and drilling the entry hole to size. Shown in photo: Sturdimount SMR68BTW TW
You can even cut a circular mounting block to sit flush with the hydrant’s faceplate. Photo thanks: Dan Cooney Construction
Above: A properly weather-sealed House Hydrant V2.
Below: Quick Flashing provides an easy and effective way of sealing around the hydrant shaft. Use the P100 size.
3. Install plumbing adapter
Unscrew the rear valve housing from the hydrant body. You can use any male-threaded 1/2″ NPT adapter to connect to your supply line. The copper adapter shown above is used to connect to PEX tubing. Sweat-on or push-fit adapters can also be used with the House Hydrant. Use teflon tape and firmly tighten the adapter to the rear valve housing.
Common Types of Compatible Plumbing Adapters
1/2″ PEX expansion adapter
PEX expander tool required. The tubing is stretched and slipped over the adapter, and then it shrinks with incredible force.
1/2″ Push-fit adapter
No tools required. Simply push the PEX tubing onto the adapter. 90° angled adapter shown.
1/2″ Copper sweat-on adapter
For copper plumbing, not PEX. The copper is soldered together using flux and a heat source such as a MAP torch.
1/2″ Press-fit adapter
A PEX press tool is required to crimp the sleeve over the tubing.
4. Connect to plumbing
First, re-assemble the hydrant by screwing the rear valve housing back onto the body. Make sure the internal spring and rod are correctly in place, and test operation with the hose connector.
Then, insert the hydrant into the entry hole from the exterior.
Once in place, connect your supply line to the plumbing adapter. This step will vary based on your plumbing type. Some plumbing adapters require heat or tools, others simply push onto the fitting.
We recommend using PEX tubing because it is easier to install and maintain, and provides additional freeze protection over copper. PEX can expand and contract without breaking as the temperature changes. By adding an extra expansion loop inside the wall, you allow easy future maintenance from the exterior of the home. This allows you to pull out the entire hydrant assembly after unscrewing from the wall.
To fit narrow wall spaces, a 90° fitting can be used. Shown above is a 4″ hydrant inside a 2×6 wall. Even with this very short stem, the hydrant still provides freeze protection to 0° F in properly insulated walls. This is due to the excellent thermodynamic properties of our 100% stainless steel hydrants.
We now manufacture 90° rear valve housings for our hydrants to fit 2×4 walls. Contact us for details.
5. Secure to wall
Head back outside, and align the hydrant’s faceplate so that the logo and holes are level.
After it has been permanently attached the supply line, the hydrant can still be aligned. The rear valve housing has been designed to allow up to 360° of travel from full lock while keeping a watertight seal. There is no need to use tools or use excessive torque to tighten it.
Make sure the included debris cover is wedged between the faceplate and wall, and holes are aligned. The wedge and cover keep the hydrant sloped downward a 5° angle, and must be installed to allow drainage. Without draining, the hydrant cannot offer freeze protection. Ensuring the Aquor logo is on the bottom, use the included screws to secure the hydrant to your home’s wall.
5. Test operation without water
Open and close the debris cover to check that it closes smoothly. Insert the Aquor hose connector and make sure the rod and valve open smoothly. The inner spring should provide enough resistance to hold the connector in place. Water pressure will provide a much stronger seal once turned on. Remove the connector before proceeding.
6. Turn on water and check for leaks
With the hydrant disconnected, turn the water supply on. Inspect the following 4 points for leaks:
- Plumbing adapter. The most common source of leaks. Ensure the fitting threaded in is watertight. Low-quality fittings can be prone to leaking or breaking when overtightened. Ensure teflon tape was used.
- Hydrant outlet. Check that there is no water leaving the main outlet. Wait at least 10 minutes to check if any water slowly pools up – it could be a sign of debris stuck in the rear valve.
- Rear valve housing. Inspect the connection of rear housing to hydrant body. It is designed to be unscrewed more than a full revolution without leaking.
- Vacuum breaker (V2 models only). Inspect the vacuum breaker cap for any signs of water leakage.
Use the included hose connector or an Aquor removable faucet to test the live hydrant. If using a hose connector, make sure you attach it to a garden hose first! Otherwise you may end up wet.
Line up the 3 grooves on the connector with the hydrant. Once all 3 grooves catch, push and twist into the hydrant. Pretend you are wringing a towel with your hand. Make sure to give it a firm, quick twist! Many people’s first mistake is inserting the connector too gently. The valve must be fully engaged in one twist to lock open. Remember, we are using physics to beat 40-120+ pounds of water pressure! Once you learn the motion, you’ll have no problems connecting.
The most common second mistake is unplugging immediately after connecting. The water pressure built up between the hydrant’s valve and the connector has nowhere to go, so it sprays from the outlet. To prevent this, always release pressure in the garden hose after connecting and disconnecting – just squeeze the nozzle on the other end.
We will be continuously updating this page with better content and more photos to help you with your installation.
If you have any suggestions on how we can improve this guide, please contact us! We’d love to hear your feedback.
Photos of your hydrant installation are always welcome too.
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