Although we are still enjoying the hot, beautiful days of summer (here in the Northern Hemisphere at least), winter will be here in just a few short months. Summer is the perfect time to take care of some of the preventative tasks that will keep your plumbing operating smoothly all year long, and avoid costly problems.
Specifically, as the family enjoys the water activities of summer – pools, slip and slides, and sprinklers just to name a few – think about any jobs which need to be done to prepare your plumbing for the winter, before the cold arrives. Be proactive by scheduling plumbing maintenance now, and call a reliable plumber like Mister Plumber to get winter ready.
One of the first things a plumber will do is to carefully inspect all plumbing and take care of any leaks, outside or inside; then, the plumber will make sure that all pipes in unheated areas are wrapped in pipe insulation, and may also want to wrap with heat tape for extra protection. For more information about pipe insulation, check out this article, which does a good job detailing the reasons behind pipe insulation. Essentially, frozen pipes can lead to bursting, which can in turn lead to flooding – and every homeowner ought to know that flooding never comes cheap.
If existing pipe insulation or heat tapes seem worn or show any sign of wear, they will need to be replaced. If you are not sure about heat tapes or question the safety, ask your plumber for more information, or check out videos like this one.
Be sure to inform your plumber of any areas that have experienced problems in the past, so he/she can pay special attention to fixes for those areas. Pipes that are most prone to freezing are those close to exterior walls, so sometimes the best solution for that is to move those pipes, and to do that you will need to call a reliable plumber. Making sure pipes are protected from freezing temperatures is crucial, and may end up saving you thousands of dollars in the long run. Also, if you have any waterproofing projects planned in the basement, completing them before winter will provide the best protection for your home.
Homeowners should make sure that outside faucets are winterized before freezing temperatures hit. All water hoses should be disconnected from faucets and drained, and the water supply to the outdoor faucets should be shut off during the winter (most have their own shutoff valve).
Another task for homeowners is to have their furnace checked to be sure everything is in good shape before the cold arrives. A furnace that goes down during outside freezing temperatures leaves all plumbing at risk of freezing, and potentially bursting. It is also a good idea to purchase alternate heating sources, such as space heaters to have in case of an emergency.
If you remain proactive by dealing with leaks, pipes, faucets, and waterproofing now, while the weather is still warm, you will not need to worry about plumbing this winter