Winter Plumbing Tips
Winter is great! Okay, maybe it would be better if we had snow or if Mother Nature could make up her mind in terms of if it’s going to be Winter or Spring. Yes, Winter in Texas is great. Outside of getting snow (or wishing for snow), Winter can also wreak havoc on your plumbing system if not properly cared for. Read on for some helpful tips in making sure that your home is ready for the remaining part of Winter.
Perform an Inspection
Right now, it’s nice enough during the day to where you can go outside without a jacket. We all know that Winter always makes her comeback in February though! While you can, we recommend that you take a walk around your house and inspect all outdoor plumbing items. Check your faucets, pipes, and hoses. If you have hoses outside still, disconnect, drain them, and put them away. We also recommend investing in some hose bibb covers to protect your outdoor spigots. You can get them at any hardware store, or through an online retailer such as Amazon or The Cover Store. Inside your home, make sure to check all faucets, pipes, and showerheads for any leaks or cracks.
Be Careful with Clogged Drains
We all know that clogs can happen year round so it’s good practice to always take care of clogs as soon as they happen. It’s especially imperative during the winter because having water all over your floor can cause more damage during the cold times of the year. Avoid clogs by paying attention to what you (or your kids – looking at you toddler of mine that likes to put Paw Patrol toys where they shouldn’t go!) are putting down your drains. Don’t pour fats, cooking oils, or significant food wastes down any of your drains. If you have long hair like me, be sure to use hair traps in your shower and stay vigilant about rinsing the tub after each use.
Clean Up Your Yard
Raise your hand if you just picked up all of the leaves only to find more leaves the next morning. I really think these leaves multiply just like laundry does! Yard debris such as branches and leaves can cause drainage issues which can lead to clogged drains if the cleanouts get debris in them. Be sure to clear your rain gutters and downspouts of leaves and debris so that drainage can runoff.
Leave a Few Faucets Open
If you’re concerned about your pipes freezing when temps drop below 32 degrees, we recommend leaving a couple of faucets open just enough to have a consistent drip. This keeps water moving in the pies and takes pressure off of them which goes a long way in preventing your pipes from freezing and possibly bursting. If you have a sink that backs up to an exterior wall, you may want to consider leaving your cabinet doors open to keep the pipes warm during the night as well. If your pipes should freeze, we highly encourage you to not take matters into your own hands by using the hair dryer….or a blow torch….as a tool. While this can help speed up the thawing process, it can also cause damage to your pipes which can lead to a burst pipe. Let the thawing happen naturally and over time.
Remember, that we are always here to help and answer any questions your may have about how to winterize your home. We are more than happy to send a knowledgeable technician to you that can assist you in keeping your home protected from the winter weather. Give us a call today, you’ll be glad you did!