Prepare Your Plumbing for Winter’s Challenges

December 01, 2023

Winter’s chill is fast approaching, and while cozy fires and warm blankets are on our minds, it’s also the season to pay extra attention to our home’s plumbing. The plummeting temperatures can pose significant risks to your pipes, potentially leading to issues like frozen pipes, burst water lines, and unwanted leaks.

To ensure your plumbing withstands winter without a hitch, here are some essential tips to keep in mind.

·         Insulate Your Pipes

As temperatures drop outside, so does the temperature of the water inside your water lines. If water freezes inside your pipes, the expansion can cause pipes to crack or burst, potentially resulting in a plumbing nightmare. One effective way to prevent this is by insulating your water lines. Insulation acts as a protective layer, minimizing the risk of freezing. Another way to help prevent freezing water lines, is to allow your faucets to slightly drip either on the hot or cold side. If it’s forecasted for temperatures to drop at night, allow your faucets to slightly drip overnight to try and avoid frozen water lines.

If you need assistance getting your home ready for winter, don’t worry, a licensed plumber can assist. A licensed plumber should be able to winterize your pipes, if needed drain down your outdoor or indoor plumbing and provide repair/replacement recommendations if there are any fixtures or pipes of concern. Hiring a professional is a small investment that can save you from significant headaches down the line.

·         Protect Your Outdoor Plumbing Fixtures

Garden hoses and outdoor spigots are often overlooked but are equally susceptible to winter’s icy grip. Before the cold sets in, detach and store your garden hoses. Close the shut-off valves on pipes leading to outdoor spigots or even your irrigation system and drain out any remaining water.

Leaving hoses attached to outdoor taps throughout winter can lead to damage, so roll them up and stow them away until spring. Taking these simple steps can help avoid potential freezing and damage to your outdoor plumbing fixtures.

·         Mindful Cooking Practices

The holiday season often means increased cooking and, unfortunately, an uptick in grease and oil going down the drain. However, in colder temperatures, these substances are more likely to congeal and cause blockages in your pipes.

As tempting as it may be to let that leftover grease slide down the drain, consider disposing of it in a more responsible manner like a trash bin. Additionally, avoid putting hard-to-grind items and stringy pasta materials down your garbage disposal.

If you do notice your drain lines start to back up or clog, call a licensed plumber. They should have the necessary tools and equipment to get your drain lines free flowing again.

Know What to Do in an Emergency

Despite taking all precautions, emergencies can still happen. If your taps or faucets freeze, leave cabinet doors open to allow more heat to reach the pipes. Turn up the heat inside your home, especially at night and keep faucet cabinet doors open. Run a little water from your taps to help prevent the lines from freezing. If you are leaving for vacation this winter, it may be a good idea to turn the water off to your home, water heater or fixtures and drain down your plumbing system.

In case of a cracked or burst pipe, turn off the water at the main shut-off valve, keep faucets open to relieve pressure. While these tips can go a long way in protecting your plumbing, it’s crucial to recognize when you need professional help. In case of an emergency, call a licensed plumber immediately to assist with diagnostics and repairs.

Leave It to the Professionals

Our licensed plumbers at Show Plumbing, are equipped with the knowledge and experience to handle any plumbing issue. If you encounter a problem or suspect potential trouble, don’t hesitate to reach out for professional assistance.

Winter can be a magical time, but it shouldn’t be a stressful one for you because of your plumbing. By taking the above steps and relying on the expertise of our licensed plumbers, you can better prepare your home for the upcoming winter chills. In case you need a licensed plumber this winter, our team at Show Plumbing is here to assist you in keeping your plumbing in top-notch condition. To schedule service, maintenance or repairs, call our office at 281-860-2000. Don’t let winter catch you off guard – protect your plumbing and enjoy the season with peace of mind.