DIY Garden Hose Repair And Maintenance Tips
Always stash away your garden hose by coiling it neatly around a wide bracket or steady hose reel, never by hanging it up on a sharp nail or hook. Do not leave it coiled loosely in a tangled mass on the ground where people might step on it or where cars and other wheeled vehicles would be continually rolling over it. Keep the threaded ends free from dirt and other foreign material which would make it hard to insure a watertight connection.
When winter comes, drain all the water from your garden hose and store it indoors in neat coils. Use a small brush to clear out the threads on the fittings at each end. Replace the rubber washers at the start of each season so that you will not have trouble fastening the fittings when the garden hose comes back into use once more.
When small leaks build up, it can ordinarily be repaired quite easily. On a rubber garden hose, apply a layer of plastic rubber compound, let dry, then rub gently with fine sandpaper. Apply a second coat covering a somewhat larger area to ensure an enduring patch.
Small leaks in a plastic garden hose could also be cemented over using a plastic adhesive, but the cement must be strengthened by wrapping it with plastic tape, or by application of a plastic patch. Pat the cement on and wait till it becomes sticky, then wrap with the tape or press the patch into place. When this has dried hard, put on a second covering of cement on top of the patch, see to it that you smooth off the edges.
The larger leaks and severely split sections of garden hoses are best mended by cutting off the defective section entirely, and then using a hose mending coupling to bring together the two good parts. The most common sort of coupling is a mending tube that slips in the two hose parts and includes cleats that must be screwed down around the outside of the hose to hold the coupling firmly in place. While this type could be utilized with either plastic or rubber hoses, compression-type fittings that have threaded collars will work better on plastic hoses since there is lower likelihood of their cutting through the outside skin.
Once the threaded fittings at either end of the hose are damaged, these can also be substituted by cutting out a few inches of the hose near the end. Special replacement fittings that lock on in the same fashion as the mending couplings can then be put in to make the hose as good as new once more. Since any of these menders or substitute fittings need that a serrated or tapered tube be forced into the inside of the hose, you'll discover that a plastic hose will be much easier to handle if the cut end is dunked into hot water first. This will make it more pliant and will simplify the task of forcing the fitting into place inside the hose.
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