11 Common Parts of a Hydrant

Black and white photo of yard hydrant headNo one wants to see their trusty hydrant go down for the count. Organizations count on them for all kinds of important tasks, and if you’re unable to fully utilize them, you’re going to run into some issues. This is all to say that it might be necessary to replace different parts of a hydrant over the years, and when those times come, you need to know what you’re working with. 

That’s what this post is all about. In it, we’ll detail all the different parts of a hydrant you should be aware of, whether you’re looking to replace or repair them or you just want a little more information about how hydrants work. Our main focus is yard hydrant parts, but we’ll broaden the scope to other hydrants, too.

Obviously the exact parts you’ll need will vary greatly depending on the type of hydrant you’re trying to repair. These are just general parts that you can find and might need to replace in many types of hydrants. And even if you don’t need to repair certain parts, being able to identify the different components can help you better understand and communicate more effectively about your hydrants.


The outlet for the water is on the head of the hydrant, so these are important yard hydrant parts. The head of a hydrant encompasses a lot of important parts that we’ll detail in the following sections. Between the nozzle and the handle, the only parts of a hydrant that most people interact with are all encompassed by the head. So, that makes it a great place to start. 

The head also has more aesthetic components than any of the other parts of a hydrant on our list. After all, you won’t even see many of the others. Some don’t care about how visually appealing their yard hydrant parts are, but the ones who do definitely care about the head. So, keep it fresh and clean. There usually aren’t very many options for pretty hydrant heads, but there are some ornamental options out there. Keep your eye out for them if that’s something that interests you.


When we’re talking yard hydrant parts that compose the head of the hydrant, a handle is probably the most visibly obvious one there. Plus, it’s the main way people interact with yard hydrant parts. You’ll need some way to operate the hydrant, after all. These come in different varieties — some you lift, some you turn. Replacements for these parts of a hydrant should retain that same operation style. And if you’re ordering one for the first time, make sure you know which time of handle you prefer.

The handle is one of the yard hydrant parts that gets a lot of use, but they’re also very sturdy. There are lots of other parts of a hydrant on our list that are more likely to need replacement before you ever need to repair the handle. However, there are also a lot of moving parts involved, so don’t neglect any of the screws, washers, nuts, and bolts that are also associated with the handle. They might be causing leaks and therefore need to be replaced. 


You won’t get much of anywhere without a nozzle on your hydrant. You’ll need one with threading that matches the hose you’re going to hook up to it. So, if you’re ordering a replacement nozzle or selecting one for the first time, pay special attention to the size and type of threading. 

Depending on the type of hydrant you have, you might also want a cap for the nozzle. A cap deters unauthorized people from using the hydrant, which can help lower operating costs and water usage. Some hydrants are designed to be used by anybody who would like to, while others are more specialized. Nozzle caps work well for that second group. If something happens to the cap, you’ll want to replace it quickly so that you don’t have to worry about other people using your hydrant. 

Nozzle caps aren’t typically yard hydrant parts, but they’re very common for other types of hydrants.


The vertical pipe that comes out of the ground in a yard hydrant is the standpipe. It houses a lot of the other yard hydrant parts we’ve got on our list, like the operating rod and plunger. We’ll get to those in later sections, but for now, it’s just important to know that the standpipe needs to be sturdy enough to protect all of those elements as well as allow water to flow through it.

If you need to buy a replacement standpipe, measure very carefully. You’ll be charged per foot, so you want to be exact in how much you need. You might need to make it longer or shorter than it initially was for whatever reason, so make note of those changed needs, too.


This is one of the parts of a hydrant that should be positioned below the frostline so that freezing does not become an issue. This is where the drain port is and where the plunger stops the water or allows it to flow through. That makes the valve one of the most crucial yard hydrant parts.

We’ll go over the parts that work inside the valve to make that draining process in the sections dedicated to those individual yard hydrant parts. However, the valve is important to making it all happen, so it’s worthwhile to mention here that you should investigate the need to replace a valve if you’re having freezing issues, poor drainage, or other water flow issues.

Casing Guard

For the most part, casing guards are there for aesthetic reasons. A typical yard hydrant with just the standpipe and the head isn’t very pretty to look at. An ornamental casing guard can change that. They can be painted in a suitable or subtle color, and they add to the overall visual appeal.

Casing guards are often made out of cast iron, making them very durable. You probably won’t ever have to worry about replacing it, but it’s an important aspect to keep in mind if you’re looking for ornamental yard hydrant parts that can spruce up your outdoor space. 

Most organizations that have yard hydrants don’t really care about how visually appealing they are, but if you’re adding a hydrant to a garden or other aesthetic-focused place, you might want something that blends in a little bit better. Casing guards can help you make that happen. When they’re paired with a decorative hydrant head and handle, you can see great results. 


Another crucial component, the plunger keeps the drain outlet covered when in use and blocks the in-flow of water when not in use. Proper drainage is important to making sure your hydrants don’t freeze when the temperatures drop. So, if you’ve got freezing issues or leaks, the plunger is one of the parts of a hydrant to check out and potentially replace first. 

Replacing the plunger is a fairly simple and standard repair. As long as you shut off the water first and assemble the right tools, you shouldn’t run into any difficulties. You’ll have to remove the head of the hydrant and then the operating rod, which we’ll discuss in more detail in the next section. After that, it’s as simple as unscrewing the old one, putting on the new one, and reassembling all the other pieces. Just make sure you have all the yard hydrant parts you need before you get started!

Operating Rod

You might have also heard this yard hydrant part referred to as a pump rod. They’re the same thing. This is another of the parts of a hydrant that fit inside the standpipe. The plunger is on the end, and when the handle is activated, the operating rod raises, allowing the valve to move upward, plug the drain, and let water through.

All the parts of a hydrant are interconnected, of course, so it might be hard to diagnose what exactly the issue is right off the bat. The operating rod is probably not the first place you’ll look, but you should be able to inspect it if you’re taking a look at the plunger or valve. They all work together, and any of them could be the culprit of your issues.

Nuts, bolts, screws, washers, etc.

Don’t forget about the little parts of a hydrant that hold it all together. They’re not as flashy as all the major components we’ve listed so far, but they’re absolutely vital to proper functioning. If you’ve got a leaky hydrant on your hands, the o-rings and other small parts like these are probably the first place you should look to find the problem.

Some of these are the most likely yard hydrant parts to break, so you’ll probably need to replace them the most over the years. Contacting the company you originally purchased the hydrant from can be a good place to start if you’re struggling to find the exact right size of part you need. Many of the parts we’ve listed so far can be ordered directly from the manufacturer. 

These are the sorts of parts that might also come bundled together in a repair kit, which we’ll talk about in more detail in a later section.

Optional Parts of a Hydrant

Yard hydrants and other options will come with certain parts standard, but you will likely have some opportunities to slightly customize your hydrant. Optional, additional parts can make a hydrant more functional for your specific needs. Don’t hesitate to ask about any additions you might be able to make or any alternate materials those parts might be able to be made out of. A company can’t always deliver on your requests, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. 

One great example of optional hydrant parts is the nozzle cap we mentioned earlier. They’re necessary for some hydrants but not for others. Another example is a locking device. Whether you decide to add these extra security features to your list of yard hydrant parts is up to you.

Repair Kits

Now, while these aren’t technically individual yard hydrant parts, they contain lots of the stuff you’ll need to replace the parts of a hydrant that most often need attention. It can be helpful and convenient to group replacement parts in this way. A repair kit might include the o-rings and washers necessary to complete common replacements, for example, or a set of other small parts that make everything work together. Purchasing those smaller components separately can end up being frustrating, so getting them in one package deal makes things easier for some folks.

The obvious downside, though, is the lack of customizability. The parts of a hydrant that you actually end up needing could be different from what’s included in the kit. And of course, if a major part fails, you’ll have to order that separately. 

It still makes sense to have a repair kit on hand. That way, you’ll be better prepared to handle general wear and tear that’s sure to happen over time. 

Get the right hydrant parts for your next repair.

We’ve listed out all of our biggest and most common hydrant repair parts, but this is barely scratching the surface of what all hydrants can do, even on top of all the customizations we alluded to in an earlier section. Your specific needs will vary greatly depending on the type of hydrant you’re trying to repair. We couldn’t possibly list all of the parts of a hydrant that would cover every single situation. However, you should still be able to get any replacement parts you need to make sure your hydrant can serve you for a long time to come. 

If you have one of our products, you can go to this page and find the hydrant you’re trying to fix. Then, you can view the parts list for that model. Ordering the different parts of a hydrant from our expert team here at Kupferle is an easy and convenient way to make sure you’re getting exactly what you need.