Winter Plumbing Problems and What to do

Maintaining a healthy and efficient water system is always important throughout the year but can be especially important during harsh winter weather and the busy holiday season. There are a few key issues to look out for and ways to prevent issues. These preventative measures can also protect against excess water loss and excessive bills.

A frozen pipe can be the worst winter plumbing issue you can face. While the fact that it is frozen may not be the main issue, if it bursts, you may be left with thousands of dollars in damage. Keeping your thermostat about 55 degrees Fahrenheit and leaving the water dripping can prevent frozen pipes and ultimately a pipe bursting. Keeping your heat running at 55 degrees Fahrenheit, even if the building is unoccupied, may result in a few extra dollars on the power bill but could save you money in damage.

Your water heater may not be ready for the upcoming cold weather. The colder it is, the more it must work. Therefore, adding insulation can ease the burden of your water heater. Make sure your water heater tank’s sacrificial rod is in good condition and make any repairs or replacements as needed.

Fallen leaves may be beautiful but they can damage outdoor drains. When it rains or as snow melts, trash, debris, and dirt are carried toward the drain. This can cause damage to the pipes underneath and around a building. Raking excess leaves and removing trash around drains can prevent clogs and pipe damage.

Make sure to disconnect any outdoor water hoses, as these can freeze and ultimately damage pipes. Remember to bring them inside before the cold weather hits.

If your building has a garbage disposal, turn it on first before adding in any waste to ensure it can run properly. Run plenty of water after the food has drained to clear the system for the next time you need it.

Lastly, make sure you know where the building or facility’s main water valve is located. In case of an emergency, such as a pipe bursting, you can immediately shut off all water in the home via the main water valve.

When it comes to maintenance, it is important to hire a quality technician that can make sure future issues are as limited as possible. Licensed and insured technicians from a reputable company will provide an upfront explanation of the repair process. Even with these precautions, winter can sometimes get the best of your building’s plumbing. A professional can determine whether you are prepared for the cold weather.

You never know when pipes can burst and if they have never been inspected before, make sure to check them to make sure they are in peak shape for the winter months.

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