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Bib & Lawn Taps Guide & Our Top Picks

Published on: 02/03/2011
Last Updated: 09/06/2022
Bib & Lawn Taps

Boasting an irresistible mix of classic styling and rugged utility, bib taps will work hard for your family indoors and out. Whether they’re in pride of place over a beautiful Belfast sink in your period kitchen, filling up a gorgeous cast-iron bath in your vintage-inspired bathroom, or simply doing their daily duty out in the garden, these traditional taps are a timeless choice. With a basic design that’s largely unchanged since the Edwardian age, they are a plumbing staple in homes all around the world. Because bib taps have been around for so long, they have expanded into an enormous range of shapes, styles, and sizes. If you’re looking for the perfect bib taps for your needs, you may have a few questions.

The word "bib" (from "bibcock") refers to the shape and functionality of the tap: a faucet with a nozzle turned down that can be connected to a hose. Bib taps have typically been mounted on walls, but can also be secured to a deck or counter – one example being the Crosswater Belgravia Crosshead Bib Taps, which are perfect for use in the kitchen next to a sink or basin. Older bib taps usually have a thread on their spouts which can be used to secure a hose.

Why Select Bib Taps?

Bib taps come in a wide range of varieties, from simple, sturdy single fixtures to deluxe designer systems. The simplicity of operation makes them ideal for many applications. Their versatility doesn’t only refer to aesthetics, however. A bib tap with a hose attached can water the garden, and the same tap without a hose can be used to fill buckets. Bib taps are often used outside but can work just as well in an indoor bathroom or kitchen.

Does the styling matter?

The importance of styling is a very personal choice and will depend on what job you want your bib taps to perform. A range of styling choices allows you to find a rugged tap perfect for outdoor use or bib taps that will blend with any interior design. With such a wide variety of styles and price points on the market, you can find the taps which will suit any budget.

What types are available?

Tre Mercati Capri

Bib taps mainly differ in the types of valves used to control the flow of water. Utilitarian bib taps often use a simple lever valve, so that the water can be easily started with a single flip of the lever.

More traditional bib taps are paired with the vintage style of Belfast sinks and clawfoot free-standing baths. These often use old-fashioned crosshead handles, like these beautiful chrome bib taps, also by Tre Mercati.

Tre Mercati Imperial

Concussive activation tap is another popular of bib tap. Bib taps may be sold with or without hot/cold water mixers, and many are suitable for use either as wall-mounted taps, or mounted on standpipes or upstands. Some bib taps are sold together with standpipes/upstands, like these deluxe gold Tre Mercati models.

Tre Mercati Gold Taps

What is the difference between bib taps on standpipes vs bib taps with upstands?

This is a simple difference in terminology which differs between manufacturers. The item is the same in both cases, and the terms are interchangeable. They simply refer to the pipe to which a bib tap is attached. Standpipes are usually meant to be used with bath taps, so you may see that name used with bib taps intended for indoor use, while many companies will say bib taps with upstands for general bib taps.

Sarabeth Asaff

Sarabeth Asaff
Sarabeth Asaff is a former kitchen and bathroom designer who now works as a home and garden industry writer and expert. She has a working knowledge of all areas of the home improvement industry, and specialises in functional design and material advice.