Don’t we love our gardens with all those plants smiling at us? To keep them in full bloom we do our best in care taking. Removing the weeds, digging then digging deeper. Well when our hands are full of it and what is left is just watering, we turn on the taps to get a shower down our clothes. Damn! The water hose has a leak. Was it the expensive one you had bought or the cheap one, throwing lengths of it away just because of one small leak does not sound like a good deal! Fixing a garden hose is possible so before you throw away that 60 dollars-worth of pipe out.
The cheaper garden hose wrinkle very easily, crack and then burst at multiple locations. But that does not mean nothing will happen to the expensive one. Sometimes a dog teeth or incessant stepping over a particular place can lead to the hole in the pipe. You can opt for quality, like metal garden hoses that remains sturdy and flexible at the same time.
This guide helps you with the basics of fixing a hole in the garden hose before you plot on throwing it away, it also has a bonus aussie (Australian) story for you on fixing holes. Following are a set of options that you can try out if your hose leaks or if it magically turns into a sprinkler. Read along to get your way through this trivial gardening issue and be the next best gardener in town!
Here’s what you may need for fixing a hole in the garden hose:
- A pair of scissors
- A screwdriver with a flat blade
- A hose clamps
- Self-adhesive rubber tape or electrical tape
Cut the length of the rubber tape and apply it firmly to the leak. You can circle the spot with a marker before you apply the tape so that you know you are bang on the spot. Exactly where you put the tape put the hose clamp so that the pressure stays on the hole at all times. Put on the water pump and check for any leaks. This will release sprinkles of water around the leaky areas for you to fix up again.
Here’s another option. Sometimes the hole in the pipe is not very visible so you have to go on a hunt to locate it. Find the location if it is where you have joined two hoses. Exactly at the spot of a sprinkler head, or check if it leaks someplace on the tube.
If it is at a joint – you have spotted it, the leak is at a joint. Then detach it from the other devices and apply petroleum jelly all over the threads. Wash your hands off thoroughly before you reattach the devices as they will keep slipping due to your slick hands. The leaks may not disappear completely but there will definitely be lesser leaks in proportion to the earlier check.
- If it is in the hose – dry the section where you have found the hole or a cut and get rid of kinks. With thick paper tissues try cleaning the insides of the hole if possible. Then apply rubber cement but only on the top of the hole. It should not get inside the hole for that will result in a clog. Once clogged it will either burst out there or break.
- The Spigot is leaking – first replace the washer. Washers get used up very easily. Their life is very short. Replace the washer and your leak could just disappear. However, if there is still a lot of leakage change the coupling.
- Another option for a bigger hole – cut-out a piece of rubber from an old rubber article or accessories that no longer serves a purpose to you. It could be from rubber shoe or a tyre or any rubber material that you have in hand. Use a very strong adhesive while you stick it down to the hole in the hose. Let it dry for some time. If the piece is well cut. It is sure to hold down the water in the hose.
- Coupling for bad tears – you have done all your household remedies but nothing is coming close to repairing that section. Solution cut it off. Get a coupling, read the instructions carefully so that you can re-join your pipe just where you want it to.
- If there are really small leaks then try simple electrical tape. You can also search for exclusive hose repair tape. These when turned around carefully can do the trick. Do not overlap the tape with all you might for this will make the hose crease not letting the tape stick to that section as air bubbles will pop out.
- Cutting and/or fitting with replacements – here is an option fit for a plumber. But if you think you can manage and would like to take it on yourself in positivity, try it out. It is not really a cakewalk but can be managed with items laying across home.
Cut out the damaged parts with a sharp knife. Be careful when you are cutting, it should be straight cuts, you could use a blade as well. Take that part when you are getting a replacement. Sometimes vendors and suppliers change so to get the exact one you bought last time could be a bit difficult. Now that you have got it or something simpler begin by drying off the hose. It should be completely arid.
You can try rubbing a bit of soap to that section so that it gets easier to slide on. The cuts that you have made to the hose should be as square as possible. Take the coupler and loosen the screws on both sides. Put the clamp mender into the cut end of the sectioned hose. Tighten the screws just enough that no one is able to pull off the coupler. Now check. If you have done it right the leak should not exist.
While getting rid of the holes in your garden hose which is quite cumbersome you can try to protect your hose from getting those holes. Here are few ways to try to keep your hose out of harms way.
- When you are done with the hose, drain off the excess water. Put it over your shoulder trying to remove all drips of water. The water retention in the hose which is otherwise not drained will slowly damage your pipe.
- Is the direction of the hose right where the sun rays fall. Then you need to put a protective covering over it or try to change the direction. Hot air forces any hose to expand and thus small holes erupt in your hose.
- Once you are done, coil the hose with your hand or if you have a reel, do it immediately.
- Do not let it lay there in your garden all day where someone might step over it.
- If there are any attachments then remove it once finished. You don’t want them to get damaged.
- Small signs of leaks mean the washers need to be replaced. Do this immediately and you can save yourself a lot of trouble.
No doubt they say gardening is not for everybody. You have to have a real passion not only for the soil, the plants and the flowers but also for the pots, the accompaniments and your tools. You need to treat each of them with respect to get them to work for you for the years to come. A beautiful garden needs a lot of head work, tirelessness and patience. Someone each one of us is not built to do this, so you can definitely ask for help. Or do only as much as you think you will be able to keep doing every day. A sudden mood spring for a beautiful garden could be a short passé. Wait until you really feel you would like to spend time and money in the garden to get the results.
This is how the Australians do it.
They suggest just cutting off the section that has the leak and connecting it with a joiner. As the joiner is just a few dollars as against the huge cost of replacing the entire hose pipe.
One adamant gardener says he tried Fiber Fix? It helps fix handles to broken appliances. But when used it on a leaking hose pipe it showed to be a temporary fix as the pipe began to leak again. Loctite is available in the market but that too did not work as a permanent solution.
Finally, he tried to cut the pipe. He recommends using a miter box to hacksaw the hose. He finally used the hose clamps on either side of the hose and tightened them with a flat head screwdriver. The leak stopped permanently.
So, from the various options of repair and care that are available the clamps seem to do the trick the best. Make sure you tighten the screws right, using only a flat head screwdriver else you would have another failed try. Also, if you do not know how to cut a pipe please do not do it by yourself, take help from family or a fellow neighbor. Using the tools like a hacksaw could be quite tricky. Invest time to learn more about gardening and its varied tools, how you can do some quick fixes here and there and be a gardening pro.
Happy gardening to you!