While plumbing issues can happen at any time of the year, much more can go wrong during the harsh winter months than when the weather is nice and warm outside.
That being said, there are precautions you can take that will lessen the chances of having major plumbing issues arise during this often unforgiving time of the year.
So just because Mother Nature is having a bad day, that doesn’t mean you need to as well. Be proactive by knowing the main issues that can come up during the winter and take as many precautions as you can to reduce your chances of a major plumbing problem.
Our tips today come from a Certified Master Plumber in Texas, Elisha French, who owns the plumbing company Texas Plumbing Solutions LLC.
This is obviously one of the more common plumbing problems when the weather dips below the freezing point, but there are several ways you can reduce the likelihood of this happening to your home or business.
That’s not to say that your pipes definitely won’t freeze, but you can reduce the chances of this happening by being a bit forward-thinking and doing a little work in advance of the winter season. You can protect your pipes by wrapping them with insulation and then keeping an eye on the water flow in the shower, or even in the bathroom and kitchen sinks.
If you’ve wrapped the pipes correctly, this should prevent them from freezing. But you’ll still want to watch them when the weather dips to really cold levels. You can also keep the water running just a little bit to lessen your chances of frozen pipes. This will reduce the water pressure in the pipes and may keep them freezing during especially cold days.
It’s only natural to use a lot more hot water when it’s cold outside. So instead of the 10-minute shower, you take during the summer, maybe you’ll enjoy that hot water splashing over your body for twice as long, or even until the hot water runs out completely. As you might imagine, this can put a strain on your water heater and lead to unanticipated problems during the winter season.
The water running to the heater is also much colder during the winter, which makes it more difficult to heat and causes the heater to work harder and for longer than during other parts of the year. One trick to help reduce your chances of having a water heater problem during the winter is to reduce the water temperature in the heater to around 120-130 degrees.
This won’t eliminate the threat entirely, but it will improve the likelihood that you won’t have a failure at a time of the year when you really don’t want to be without hot water.
Clogged drains can obviously happen at any time of year, but people generally tend to do more cooking in the winter months because they’re at home and not going outside as regularly as during other months.
Because of this, more scraps, grease, and other items work their way into the pipes, causing buildups over time and problems with your plumbing. To help prevent a major plumbing expense, avoid throwing any food in the sink and dispose of grease by pouring it into an old can or simply putting it in the trash bag directly.
Clogged drains don’t happen overnight, as items generally build up over time and lead to a more extensive problem down the road. Take the small steps today to prevent a large expense tomorrow.