The winter season presents a fair share of challenges for the home plumbing system. This is especially true for areas that experience sub-zero temperatures during the height of the coldest months of the year. Plumbing experts say homeowners need to prepare their plumbing fixtures for winter so that they could avoid the damage that comes with frozen pipes.
Experts also say that homeowners, especially those that take vacations and leave their homes for days during the winter break may need to take extra steps to ensure that their vacation will not get cut short because of a plumbing emergency, nor will they come home to a flooded house.
How Winter Can Destroy Pipes
Since water expands when frozen, water that is inside the pipes could expand and cause pipes to cracks. No matter the type of material used for a home piping system, the water in there could still expand and cause damage once it gets frozen solid. Homeowners should remind themselves to prepare for winter so that they would not have to hurry to prepare once the weather forecast suddenly states that the temperature will drop below zero overnight.
Plumber’s Tips to Avoid Frozen Pipes
Frozen pipes are entirely avoidable if homeowners could prepare for sub-zero temperatures up ahead. Plumbers say homeowners must prepare the fixtures inside and outside the house. For instance, homeowners should disconnect garden hoses and other types of water hoses from their water source. The homeowner should also cover hose bibs, and insulate pipes that are exposed outdoors or in unheated areas at home like the garage. Speaking of the garage, insulate the garage doors when the climate drops to protect the pipelines that run through the area.
Plumbing Care during a Cold Snap
The house should have a steady heated temperature regardless if there are people at home or there is none. Homeowners should open cabinet doors that have pipes beneath them when the weather forecast indicates that temperatures will drop below zero. During those times, homeowners should likewise partially turn on faucets to keep water in the pipes running and therefore avert freezing. If the homeowner has not yet installed a heat cable, he should strongly consider this to prevent pipes from freezing.
When leaving the house overnight or several days or weeks, make sure to turn off the main water valve so that in case of pipes freeze and burst, the whole house will not get flooded.