Following up our previous post about getting your pipes in working order before winter hits, we thought we'd expand on some of our recommendations to prepare your plumbing for winter. The rainy season is approaching and cooler temperatures are coming fast! Don't wait for a plumbing emergency to realize your pipes need work. Consider these steps:
If you have pipes located in unheated sections of your house, it's a good idea to insulate them. Heat tape or pipe insulation is readily available at most hardware stores and many have thermostats built-in. This is a crucial step towards protecting your pipes during cold temperatures and perhaps the most important.
Instruct Every Occupant about Pipes and Valve Locations
Otherwise titled, "Be Prepared." Informing every person in your house about the locations of the pipes and shut-off valves is another preparedness step you should take in the case of a plumbing emergency. Precious seconds that a pipe bursts could mean gallons of water and catastrophic damage.
Clean Out Gutters
Prevent against roof leaks and keep your drains flowing by clearing out your gutters before the heavy rain sets in. Think of your gutters as exterior plumbing. Maintaining good water flow through your gutter system and down the drains could be the difference between a flooded basement (or worse!) and a warm, dry one.
Drain Unused Pipes
If you're going to be gone for an extended period or heading south for the winter, consider having your pipes drained completely. Water that's left in the system (especially when there's no heat) increases the risk of pipes freezing and breaking. It's especially important if no one is going to be home or checking in on your house. The damage could be extensive and last for days, weeks or months. Don't risk it!
At Pioneer Plumbing and Heating, we have the experience necessary to adequately protect your plumbing and heating systems against the cold temperatures. If the recent cold snap didn't already convince you that your pipes need attention, don't wait until the next one! Ward off the 24-hour plumber by preventing pipe damage and contact us for a check-up today!