With Thanksgiving right around the corner, you know that winter weather will soon be making the news. This is especially so since last winter in Cleveland was so mild. You can bet we aren’t going to be that lucky again.
So as we head into winter, now is a good time to review a few basic winter plumbing tips. We want you and your home to be safe and comfortable all year round. Here are a few things to take note of.
If you haven’t already done this, now’s the time to disconnect garden hoses and drain all of your outdoor pipes. Extremely cold temperatures can cause ice to form in outside lines. A frozen pipe can result in a water line leak or break that does extensive damage inside your home. This is the last thing you want or need. We recommend you install an exterior faucet jacket. They are really inexpensive – you can pick them up at any hardware store – and anyone can figure out how to install one. And they’ll help make sure your faucets don’t freeze.
If you’re traveling out of town, be sure to keep your thermostat set at 55 or above. You need some warm air to circulate to help keep pipes in the wall from freezing. You might have cold spots to watch during really cold nights. Open the cabinet doors under the sinks and faucets and near outside walls. Just this little tip can help warm air circulate and protect your pipes. It’s also a good idea to keep your garage door down as much as possible. This will help keep your house warm.
If you have pipes in crawl spaces or where heat is at a premium, be sure to wrap them with insulation. Such insulation is money well spent! Make sure you know where your main water valve is and how to shut it off. Then make sure others in your family also know where this valve is. They may need to act quickly when you’re not home! Label it if you have to. You’ll be glad you did if you ever need it.
If you live in a community that has a high water table, like Hudson, be sure to keep an eye on where your sump pump discharges outside. If the drainage area is blocked by snow or ice, the discharge line could freeze and water could back up into your home. By the same token, keep your gutters free of leaves and debris. A clogged gutter can’t handle rain runoff, so the water is likely to overflow the gutter and fall to the ground around your house. From here it can seep into your foundation, crawl spaces or your basement.
One last tip about the basement: why not flush out the sediment in your hot water tank? It only takes a minute, and doing this regularly will increase the tank’s efficiency and extend its life.
Most people could easily do all these things in an afternoon. If you haven’t tended to some of these, that’s okay. The worst of winter is still to come, but don’t put it off too long. You know how fast the weather can change in Cleveland.
If something does go wrong, call us right away. We do expert plumbing repairs all across Northeast Ohio, and with our fleet of trucks, we can be there in no time.
Call us toll-free at 877-768-7239.
When you call The Plumbing Source, you’ve made the right call!