How-To, Maintenance, Troubleshooting

How-to: Replace the House Hydrant V2 Vacuum Breaker Assembly

The vacuum breaker’s purpose is to prevent backflow.

Backflow is the reverse flow of liquid. A vacuum breaker prevents water from being siphoned backward into the system.

A vacuum breaker is a relief valve that is pressed forward by water supply pressure, and covers small vent holes. Should the supply pressure drop, the valve springs back opening the vent holes (which let in outside air), and preventing backflow of water.

How do I know if my vacuum breaker is faulty or leaking?

If the vacuum breaker is defective, it will leak when under pressure (hose connector plugged in). In normal conditions, you should not notice it doing anything. The vacuum breaker should not require any adjustments or maintenance. It is okay for it to purge or drain a few seconds longer than the main outlet. If there is a problem, it will leak continually when connected.

Okay, I’ve confirmed that it is the vacuum breaker.

Once you’ve confirmed that the leak is coming from the vacuum breaker, it’s time to inspect and replace the assembly if needed.

1) First, unscrew the vacuum breaker cap.

It’s the round piece below the main outlet. You can unscrew it by hand.

Unscrew Hydrant Vacuum Breaker Cap

2) Next, you can visually inspect the vacuum breaker through the weep hole.

If you don’t see a black washer facing you, chances are the vacuum breaker has been installed incorrectly or is missing.

Incorrect - Vacuum Breaker Valve Missing or Backwards
✖ Incorrect - Vacuum Breaker Valve Missing or Backwards
Correct Vacuum Breaker
✔ Correct - Vacuum Breaker Valve Visible

3) Unscrew the vacuum breaker retainer.

Carefully unscrew the retainer counter-clockwise using your hand, a hex key, or needle-nose pliers.

Unscrew Vacuum Breaker Retainer

4) Inspect the vacuum breaker assembly.

Note the position and orientation of each part.

If the vacuum breaker valve was installed backwards, simply re-install in the correct order. Make sure not to tighten the vacuum breaker cap too firmly. The hydrant should function correctly now.

If the valve is missing, contact Aquor Support for a replacement part.

If all parts are present and appear to be in good working condition, but the problem persists, please contact Aquor Support.

5) Complete.

2 thoughts on “How-to: Replace the House Hydrant V2 Vacuum Breaker Assembly

  1. Jim McPhee says:

    I understand that it is bad practice to leave a hose connected to any hose bib under any freezing situation, as the expansion of the freezing water will cause damage to the internal mechanism. With the traditional base bib repair is by replacement, which requires access to the internal (warm) side of the fittings. Do I understand that if freeze damage does occur, that a repair kit is available? Also, is it true that this rebuild can be done from the exterior (cold) side of the fitting? Planning to follow the recommendation of my plumber to install these in a very cold area.

    1. Aquor Water Systems says:

      Hi Jim,

      Great question — you are correct about disconnecting the hose under freezing conditions. You’re also correct about traditional hose bibs generally requiring replacement after a freeze.

      With our hydrant system, having a two-part design with the external hose connector allows it to have a fail-safe. In the worst-case scenario, if you leave the connector plugged in and the system freezes, ice will expand and push the hose connector out of the hydrant. This is why we chose to make the hose connector out of polymer rather than stainless steel. You may need to replace the hose connector, but the most important part (your home) will remain protected.

      The hydrant only has one internal part, a solid stainless steel operating rod with an O-ring. It is expected to last decades without maintenance, but can be replaced from the rear of the hydrant. With any plumbing fixture, inside or out, you’ll want to keep access to the supply line in the event of future repairs or inspection for leaks. But an easy way to remove the hydrant from the exterior of the building is to install it with an expansion loop of PEX. Add a loop of PEX tubing inside the wall, and you’ll be able to pull the entire assembly from the exterior along with the supply line and fitting.

      Let us know if this helps! If you have any other questions, we are happy to assist.

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