With winter coming on, cold weather can be a menace to home plumbing. Luckily, there are a few preventative measures that you can take now to make sure your pipes stay in good condition this winter. Remember, preventing problems now is much easier than correcting them in the future!
1. Know Your Pipes
As a homeowner, it’s a good idea to make sure you know a little bit about your plumbing, such as where the pipes are and where they carry water. Especially important is knowing the whereabouts of your home’s main water valve. In the event of a burst pipe, knowing where and how to shut off the water will prevent major damage.
2. Careful in the Kitchen
In the US, we tend to dump any and all food refuse down the drain and rely on the disposal to do the dirty work. However, you need to be careful with what you put down there. For example, oil and fat should never be poured into the sink, especially in winter. Cold temperatures can cause the oils to solidify, which will clog your pipes. Instead, let the oils or fats congeal in the cooking dish or pan, and then dispose of in the trash. For frying oil, store it in a jar, then seal up and toss with the trash.
3. Wrap Your Pipes
Check your home for pipes in uninsulated areas, or pipes running outside of the home. In freezing temperatures, these are most likely to burst, which can cause costly damage. Wrap these pipes with towels or foam (pool noodles work well) to prevent low-temperature issues.
4. Keep it Warm(ish)
Many people leave their homes for the winter holidays, and in order to conserve energy, they might turn off the heat. However, doing so may save you on your heating bill, but your pipes are likely to burst if the temperatures go below freezing. Instead, you should set your home’s temperature to at least 45F. It’s low enough to keep your bill from being too high, but high enough to protect your pipes.
5. Get Professional Assistance
Making sure your plumbing is ready for winter can be a daunting task, especially if you don’t know much about plumbing in general. If this sounds like you, don’t hesitate to hire a professional to help you out. Elite Plumbing and Heating can assist you with all of your pre-winter plumbing protection needs, so contact us for the best service available.