Dealing with frozen pipes in winter is not something any homeowner wants. Cold weather can cause water in the pipes to freeze, which can lead to a burst pipe. Here are some helpful tips to prepare your plumbing for winter.
How to Prepare Your Plumbing for Winter
1. Disconnect Garden Hoses
If you have a water supply outside, make sure that hoses connected to exterior faucets are disconnected. If your hose freezes, the water inside will too, and it can burst or crack.
2. Protect Outdoor Faucets to Prepare Your Plumbing for Winter
Prepare your plumbing for winter by draining outdoor faucets and covering them with insulation. This will prevent water from freezing inside the pipe and causing damage.
You may also want to invest in frost-free hose bibs if you live in an area with very cold winters and below-freezing temperatures. This will further protect your plumbing from leaks, frozen and burst pipes, and the resulting water damage.
3. Let Faucets Run
If the temperature will be below 20 degrees F, leave a faucet slightly dripping in each bathroom, kitchen, and utility room. The steady flow of water is usually enough to prevent freezing and the resulting damage to pipes, your home, and your belongings.
4. Know Where the Shut Off Value Is
Most homes have a master shutoff valve that controls the water flow to the house, and knowing where yours is located is crucial. If a pipe bursts and water is leaking into your home, turn off the main valve as soon as possible to avoid water damage. Call a plumber to make repairs and prevent further damage to your home.
5. Pipe Wraps and Insulation Help Prepare Your Plumbing for Winter
If you have exposed pipes in your basement or crawl space, make sure that they’re insulated or wrapped to keep them from freezing. It’s best to do this before the weather gets cold, but you can take steps to better protect the plumbing pipes at any point.
6. Call a Pro
If you find yourself dealing with a frozen pipe, call a plumber. They have the experience and equipment to deal with frozen pipes quickly, safely, and effectively.
Winter weather can cause problems around the house, but frozen pipes are one of the most common concerns when temperatures drop during winter. By following these tips, you’ll minimize the chances that your plumbing will freeze.