It’s mid-November, and you’ve raked the last of your leaves and put your lawn mower away. The deck furniture is safely stowed away for the next five months, and you’re feeling like you’re done for the season.
Not so fast. There are still a few simple steps you can take to make sure your winter is uneventful, especially in terms of plumbing problems. Let’s review some of the basic steps you need to take to have a comfortable winter with no surprises!
If you haven’t done so, disconnect garden hoses and drain outdoor pipes. Bitterly 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. Not good. It’s a good idea to install an exterior faucet jacket. They are really inexpensive and a snap to install. And they’ll help make sure your faucets don’t freeze.
Warm air helps keep pipes in the wall from freezing. Keep your house above 55 degrees to be safe. You might have cold spots to watch during really cold nights. Opening cabinet doors under sinks and faucets and near outside walls can help warm air circulate and protect your pipes. 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. You should also know where your main water valve is and how to shut it off. 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.
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.
Lastly, while you’re down 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.
Got all this done? It wasn’t so bad, right? Now you can sit back and relax, watch the Browns or Ohio State and not worry about what Old Man Winter can throw at you.
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 at 216-365-0600.
When you call The Plumbing Source, you’ve made the right call!