Did you know that indoor plumbing goes all the way back to 2500 B.C.? Despite its ancient provenance, plumbing has a very present day benefit that no housing can do without. The chilly fall temperatures ought to be a reminder to prepare your house for the coming winter. Among the several preparatory routines you need for your home, winter plumbing planning should not be left out.
Since there are several things to take care of when it comes to winterizing your plumbing, you need a list to go over. From drain cleaning to pipe insulation, you need to cover it all. Here is an in-depth list you can use to get your plumbing ready for the cold season.
During the winter, anything that is in your drain will most likely get frozen which will only lead to more plumbing charges for you. Thus, drain cleaning and unclogging is a critical area of your winter plumbing preparation routine. Before you can do any drain cleaning, you first need to identify and remove any matter that’s clogging the drains. Check each drain for foreign material like hair and dirt, removing what you can.
Once every drain is clear of visible foreign matter, drain cleaning can commence. Pour a half-cup of baking soda into the drain followed by a similar amount of vinegar. Leave it overnight with the plug in place. In the morning, pour boiling water over each drain to flush out the cleaning agents along with any dirt.
Even though you are preparing for winter, it doesn’t mean you should slack on drain cleaning once the season has passed. Ensure you repeat the process every month to avoid clogs that will require you calling an emergency plumbing service.
Surprisingly enough, the top most problem emergency plumbers face during the winter is damaged outdoor faucets. When you leave a connected water hose out during the winter it can damage the faucets or even cause them to burst. Ensure you disconnect any hoses from the faucet, drain them of water and store them indoors.
Additionally, if there are any valves controlling the outside faucets you need to shut them off. Confirm that the outside lines are also fully drained once the valves are shut. For good measure, consider covering your outside faucets with an insulation kit.
3. Downspouts and Gutters
Your gutters and downspouts are essentially a drainage system for the outside of your house. As such, you need to ensure that they are clear by the time winter strikes. Once the leaves have stopped dropping, you need to inspect and clean your gutters of any accumulated leaves. If you don’t, the leaves will compact and retain water.
The excess water will lead to ice dams, which in turn stops water from not draining from the roof. Unchecked, these ice dams can trigger emergencies that cause flooding in the house. The pressure from ice dams can lead to gutters falling off and structural damage.
As winter looms, any uncovered pipes in unheated areas are vulnerable and you need to fortify them against freezing. Inspect your piping for any leaks and if need be call an emergency plumber North Highlands provider to help you seal them.
Consider investing in an insulation kit to keep your pipes from succumbing to the cold. However, if your pipes are not yet covered by the time you get the freeze warning, you can make do with duct tape in place of self-adhesive edging on a pipe. Using duct tape is only a short term fix. As soon as possible, you need to insulate the pipes and make it a habit to do so in advance as part of your fall preparation routine.
Don’t Let Winter Catch Your Plumbing Unprepared
Plumbing has its roots in ancient times. Just like homeowners centuries ago, you need a properly functioning system during the cold winter months. The adverse weather conditions in winter can cause costly plumbing emergencies unless you take the time to winterize your entire system beforehand.