Winter Plumbing Prep – Preventing Plumbing Problems
With winter right around the corner, now is a good time to get your homes plumbing ready for the colder months ahead. Winter plumbing prep can help save your homes plumbing from some costly repairs.Here is how you can prevent plumbing problems this winter.
Prevent Frozen Pipes
In areas of the country that are prone to freezing temperatures, most homes plumbing is equipped to handle the sudden drop in temperatures. However, in areas that have more of a Mediterranean climate, they may be caught off guard if the temperature unexpectedly drops below freezing. In Southern California, we enjoy warm temperatures almost all year long, however, on occasion, temperatures can drop below freezing. When this happens a lot of plumbing could be vulnerable.
To prevent frozen pipes in even the nicest of climates it is a good idea to make sure that all exposed pipes are properly insulated. In addition, it is a good idea to disconnect garden hoses from outdoor spigots. This helps protect your plumbing and also keeps your hose is good shape.
Check Your Water Heater
During your winter plumbing prep it is a good idea to perform some regular maintenance on your water heater. This involves draining and flushing the tank, inspecting the tank for weaknesses, making sure the heat source is in good shape, and checking the thermostat. Regular maintenance can help your water heater last longer, and can help prevent plumbing problems.
Bonus tip, during the colder months of the year, you may be tempted to turn up the temperature on your water heater. As a safety precaution, you should never turn your water heater up above 125°F. Water temperatures above 125°F cause severe burns, especially for young children and pets. So veer on the safe side and keep water temperatures below 125°F.
Watch What Goes Down The Drain
This time of year we tend to entertain a lot more than usual. This means more cooking, which in turn puts more pressure on your home’s plumbing system. To keep things running smoothly watch what goes down the drain. Make sure you are disposing things correctly. For example, make sure that FOGs (fats, oils, and grease) gets thrown out in the trash can or taken to a recycling facility. Some other things that should never go down the drain include:
- Food peels
- Expandable food
- Paper other than toilet paper
- Cotton Swabs
- Diapers and wipes
- Dental Floss
Having your drains cleaned before your holiday soirees can help prepare your plumbing system for the added pressure.
Prepare For Rain
The winter months typically bring more rain than usual, so it is important to make sure your homes plumbing is prepared for the rain. Rain storms can often bring plumbing problems, including drainage issues and flooding. Before the rainy season starts make sure your homes drainage system is prepared. Check outdoor storm drains for clogs, and clear gutters of any debris that might have built up over the year. In addition, make sure your homes downspouts are in good shape. Your homes gutters and downspouts are designed to move water away from your homes foundation. If there are obstructions, you could risk flooding and foundation damage. If your home is equipped with a sump pump check the sump pump for proper function before the rainy season begins. Pour some water into the crock to ensure the pump engages. Also check the drain pipe to make sure proper drainage.
Winter plumbing prep is important to keep things operational. Need help staying up to date on your plumbing maintenance? Contact Rooter Hero to schedule your maintenance today!