With winter on its way, it's important to make sure that you are adequately prepared for all that it brings. Namely, inclement weather, such as snow, ice, and hail. One of the biggest problems that homeowners and renters have regarding their house or apartment is how to make sure your plumbing will be protected during these cold, occasionally freezing, months. There is a list of awful things that can happen to your plumbing during this time, including everything from frozen pipes to unusable water. Luckily, this guide will help you through these problems. Included are 4 ways to prepare your plumbing for winter.
Have Your Plumbing Inspected For Leaks
This is perhaps the first thing you should do when it comes to preparing your plumbing for winter. Call on the services of a plumber to have your plumbing system inspected for leaks. Although leaks sound like a relatively harmless issue, if you leave this problem unchecked, you will wind up with a massive problem on your hands come winter time. Leaks can lead to frozen pipes and the eventual busting of pipes and also swelling in the joints of your drains.
Pipe insulation, along with other benefits, will ensure that your pipes do not freeze during these incredibly cold months. You can pick up pipe insulation at virtually any local hardware store in your area; just make sure to call in advance if you waited until the last minute with winter rolling around the corner, as these items are quite popular. Pipes that are present in basements, attics, and garages are particularly susceptible to freezing and eventually busting as they are subject to constant cold air and, generally speaking, moisture. Pipes in all of the aforementioned areas should definitely be covered. However, pipes in other areas of your home should be covered as well, for safety's sake.
Turn Off Outdoor Appliances and Faucets
Make sure that you turn off all outdoor faucets and appliances that generally use water or have water coursing throughout their innards. It may even help and be more convenient if you simply turn off the water supply to these objects throughout the entirety of winter. There are several things that you should specifically check in order to make sure that they are properly turned off, including garden hoses, cooling units, outdoor taps, sprinkler systems, and swimming pools (among other items that this list may not include). These objects should also be properly drained. Check manuals for instructions on how to properly drain each specific item.
Close Garage Doors
This is a simple tip that is often not mentioned when it comes to hints about how to properly prepare for winter plumbing issues. Making sure that your garage doors are closed throughout the entirety of winter can pay off in the long run and might ensure that you don't receive any problems with your plumbing or, at the very least, contribute to you not having a problem with your plumbing. By keeping your garage doors closed during these months, you will make sure that no cold air, or at least, very little cold air, will hit the pipes that line the course of your garage. This can help to prevent your pipes from freezing and eventually busting.
Your plumbing system is a fickle beast. In the winter months, your pipes can be subject to a myriad of phenomenon that can cause them to freeze, crack, leak, and perhaps, eventually, break. By maintaining your pipes and dealing with the issue ahead of time, you'll be one step ahead of the game and your pocketbook will thank you for it.