Winterizing your Plumbing

snowmanAs temperatures drop further during the winter season, it’s important to make sure that all your plumbing is ready for the cold.

Frozen pipes can cause expensive and sometimes irreparable damage not just to your plumbing but also your home. Pipes will burst when frozen, but they usually burst closer to the faucet where the water pressure is stronger. To be sure you don’t ever have to deal with any such issues we’ve put together a list of things you can do to prepare:

  • Make sure your thermostat is always set to 68 or higher. This is the simplest way to avoid problems.
  • Wrap outside plumbing in foam pipe insulation and secure it with either tape, zip-ties or metal straps. For exterior pipes coming up out of the ground (common on older homes) you can also use a towel and cover it with a bucket.
  • Disconnect garden hoses and other exterior water systems and install a slip-on faucet cover.
  • Watch the weather report and during extremely cold nights, or longer periods of below-freezing temperatures, drip at least 2 of your interior faucets.
  • In homes with a pier and beam foundation, check the crawl-space (if accessible) and make sure that the pipes are insulated and that there is no evidence of a leak..
  • For frozen pipes, never use an open flame or a blow-torch to try an un-freeze it yourself. This can cause more problems than it’s worth. You may be able to help thaw it with a hair dryer, starting as close to the faucet as possible and working toward the coldest part of the pipe.

A lot of the above is pretty simple to do yourself and the insulation and faucet covers are affordable and available at most hardware stores. If you’re not sure about winterizing your home, call the experts at Berkeys: 972-464-2057 or schedule online today.

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