When the leaves and temperatures start to change, the last thing on your mind is your plumbing. But as a homeowner, seasonal plumbing maintenance is essential to ensure your system doesn’t fail you throughout the winter. So before the cold weather hits, here are some steps to winterize your plumbing.
These tips are provided by our expert plumbing technicians serving the San Mateo and surrounding areas:
Disconnect Hoses from Outdoor Spigots and Turn Off the Water
If you’re a gardener or you have a yard that’s the envy of the neighborhood, you probably have a few hoses hooked up to the exterior of your home. However, these can become susceptible to damage in the winter if the weather gets below freezing. This weather can lead to ice in the water line, which can then lead to built-up pressure that can burst your pipes.
To avoid this damage, disconnect all your hoses and turn the water off to exterior spigots. Then, turn the valve on to release any water that’s in the line. Doing both of these things will make sure that you don’t have any water in the line that can freeze.
Consider a Frost Protector
Once you’ve disconnected the hoses and turned off the water, you may also want to consider a frost protector. These foam insulators fit right over the spigot, adding another layer of protection against frost.
Hot Water Tank Maintenance
Unless you have an on-demand tankless water heater, your hot water tank needs a bit of TLC before winter comes. Start by opening the drain valve and letting the water drain out until the tank is empty. Make sure that you have a drain nearby or in the basement for the water. Otherwise, connect a garden hose to the tank and drain it in a nearby sink.
Next, drain the holding tank to relieve any additional pressure that’s within the system. You can also add antifreeze to the jet pump case as an added safety measure.
Prevent Frozen Pipes
One of the most catastrophic events that can happen to your plumbing in the winter is burst pipes. However, you can prevent this with some quick, easy maintenance. Begin your maintenance by identifying any pipes that are more susceptible to freezing. This might include pipes in crawl spaces, near the exterior of the home, or in unheated places.
Once you’ve identified which pipes may freeze, wrap them with insulation sleeves, heat tape, or foam. This will prevent them from freezing or bursting and it’s a minimal cost compared with the cost of repairing burst pipes.
Clean Your Gutters
No one likes to grab the muddy, slimy mess that builds up in your gutters over the course of the year. However, this debris can quickly clog up your system, which in turn, can lead to ice dams or water leaks inside your home. So grab a ladder and dig out all that debris so that water can flow unabated.
While even the novice DIYer can take care of these projects, don’t forget to give us a call for the more tasks or preventive maintenance. With a quick call, you can get peace of mind with a plumbing system that won’t let you down.
Our crew is comprised of experienced plumbing technicians and the most advanced equipment available for plumbers today. We’ve been serving the Bay Area for multiple decades and are here to help when you need us for all your commercial and residential plumbing needs.