Winterizing Your Plumbing and Drains
Harsh winter weather can be hard on your home. Fortunately, with a few simple steps and items found at your local hardware store, you can winterize your home's plumbing and drains and keep them in good working order all year long. Once you winterize your plumbing, it's time to think about what else you can do to protect the systems you rely on. Browse our library of seasonal plumbing tips to find out which maintenance steps to take and when.
Harsh winter weather can be hard on your home, particularly the plumbing. But by taking a few simple precautions before winter arrives, you can protect your home and avoid expensive repairs. If you can't do preventive maintenance yourself, hire an experienced, professional Roto-Rooter plumber to do it for you. Freezing temperatures and low wind chill can cause pipes to freeze and burst. Insulate water supply pipes in unheated crawl spaces and garages. Exposed pipes beneath trailers and pier and beam homes should be wrapped with thermostat controlled heat cables or heat tape. Disconnect outside hoses and cover the faucets with foam insulation kits. But if a faucet is dripping, repair it before winter arrives to prevent further damage. If your home is equipped with interior shut-off valves to outside faucets, turn them off and drain the lines. Remove all leaves and debris from roof gutters and downspouts. This prevents ice dams from forming which prevent drainage and weigh down gutters causing damage to your roof. It's best to move water away from your home as quickly as possible. And your water heater works harder when it's cold outside. Carefully drain sediment out of the tank once a year then adjust the temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit for optimum efficiency. When freezing weather is expected, make sure your furnace's thermostat is set no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent water supply pipes from freezing. Open cabinets under sinks to keep warm air circulating around pipes. And if a pipe does freeze, turn off the water supply to the pipe to reduce pressure and prevent flooding if the pipe bursts. If the frozen pipe is visible, you can use a hairdryer to thaw it and restore flow. Or you can call your local Roto-Rooter Plumbing & Drain cleaning expert. And while we appreciate your business, the best way to deal with frozen pipes is to prevent them from freezing in the first place. [Roto-Rooter jingle]