3 Ways To Protect Your Home's Plumbing System This Winter
With winter right around the corner, here are three steps you should take over the next few weeks to prepare your home's plumbing system for winter weather.
#1 Insulate All Of Your Pipes
When the temperatures drop below freezing, there is risk that your pipes could freeze or even burst open. You can significantly mitigate this risk by insulating all of your pipes.
Insulating your pipes is a really simple process. Just purchase foam tubing from your local hardware store. The foam tubing should have a slit on the side so you can just put it around your pipes. Once you push the foam over your pipes, use duct tape or electrical tape to secure the foam to your pipes.
You may also need to cut the foam down to size for the different pipes in your plumbing system.
#2 Check For Leaks
While you are working on insulating all of your pipes, you should also be checking for leaks. Be sure to check under all of the faucets in your home, including the ones that you don't use that often, such as the ones in your utility room. When you look under the faucets, look for signs that water is either dripping out or puddling up on the floor.
If you spot either of these signs, arrange to have a plumber come out and fix these leaks right away. Failing to fix these leaks can lead to additional winter plumbing issues down the road that can be avoided by fixing the issue as soon as you notice it.
#3 Close Down Your Outdoor Faucets
If you have a hose that is still hooked up to an outside faucet, unhook the hose, wrap it up and put it away. Hoses often still have water in them that can freeze and expand during the winter and ruin your outside faucet. You can avoid this issue by disconnecting all hoses from outside faucets before winter really hits.
If you have outdoor faucets, you need to turn off the shut-off valve for those faucets. Once you turn off the shut-off valve, turn on the faucet so that any water left in the lines will drain out. Then, turn the faucet off again. It is also a good idea to cover up the outside faucet; you can purchase a cold-weather hose bib for a few dollars at your local home improvement store; it slips over the faucet and helps protect it from freezing during the winter time.
Take the three steps above today to protect your home's plumbing system from winter plumbing problems.