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How can I open and close a hose spigot from 3 feet away?

I have a 10-15 gallon container of water with a threaded drain plug opening near the bottom. The container is located in a storage space that is not easily accessible .Periodically, I need be able to drain the water from the container. I would like to put a spigot or open/close valve on the drain opening, but I need a way to open and close the spigot from outside the storage space. Any low tech ideas?

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rickharris5 years ago
Buy find a flexible drive - connect to tap and put handle on other end in convenient place.

black-and-decker-x66457-flexible-drive-1300mm.jpg
andy19175 years ago
Easiest way is
1. You said it was a spigot . Get a short price of garden hose .
2. attacha spigot to the end.
3. Crawl under there one last time and attach the other end to the spigot .
4. Turn the valve on the container and leave it on permanetly
5. moving forward drain the water from your extension spigot just like you were standing there beside it.

Thisis as easy as it gets and probably as cheap as it gets.
caarntedd5 years ago
Get somebody else to turn it on for you. :D
Subaverage (author)  caarntedd5 years ago
Yeah, a little gnome or fairy. Maybe I can teach a rat to open the plug.
Burf5 years ago
Get a quarter turn spigot to replace the old one. The outdoor type usually comes with a lever style handle with a hole in it. Bolt a piece of flat metal stock long enough to easily reach from outside. Pull it forward one quarter turn and its full open, one quarter turn back and its fully shut.
orksecurity5 years ago
Of course another answer is to install an actual electrically operated valve -- solenoid or motor.
Or pneumatically operated. Or hydraulically. (Point is, direct mechanical force against a normal valve handle isn't the only answer.)

Heck, depending on just when and why you need to drain it, just fitting it with a self-starting siphon might do the job. Water level rises above top of loop, flow starts; runs until tank empties and air gets into the tube, breaking the vacuum; tank refills. Lather rinse repeat.
Subaverage (author) 5 years ago
Taking photos is presenting another challenge. Good answers so far. I'm in Guatemala so finding a flexible drive may be difficult but probably the best option. Extending the hose won't work because I can't keep it at or below the same level as the drain plug. Same with the push/pull rod idea, my access is above the unit so leverage to make sure it closes is the issue. Thanks to you all!
Like Kiteman said a pic would be good to see what were working with. Ork is probably best answer if you can add to the drain pipe to make it longer. If you can't add pipe how about as low tech as you can get,a rope tied to the valve handle to pull it open and another going the other way to pull it closed. Or you could use a stick/rod/pipe/longpointy thing that is attached to the valve handle that you could pull to open and push to close. But without a pic I'm shooting in the dark.
orksecurity5 years ago
This may be too obvious to be worth mentioning: Run a short hose/pipe from that drain plug out to where you can reach it. Connect the other end to a second valve. Connect that second valve to a short hose/pipe back to where it's supposed to drain into. Open the original valve and use the new valve to control it. This assumes the new valve can be placed level with or below the drain plug.

Or skip the first valve entirely -- run that hose directly to the barrel.

Back when I was maintaining a pool whose valves were about six feet down from a manhole (and partially blocked by the pipes they controlled), we used a "reach rod" -- a piece of tubing with a T handle at one end and a set of prongs at the other which engaged the valve handles. If you have a straight line from where you _can_ reach to the valve handle, that works. But relocating the valve so you can get to it works better.
Kiteman5 years ago
Photos of the problem would be a big help.