7 Winter Plumbing Issues to Prepare For

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The cold weather can cause various problems to your plumbing system, from frozen pipes to leaks. Some are easy to prevent, while others require the help of a professional. 

However, preparing your plumbing for winter reduces the risk. You also prevent severe damage to your property from water damage and costly repairs. Take a look at these seven winter plumbing issues and take action.

Leaks

The cold weather causes existing leaks to worsen. The expansion of water when it freezes makes tiny cracks turn into gaping holes. Inspect your plumbing for leaks and have them repaired before winter sets in. If the pipes are old, have plumbing repair experts replace them with new, sturdier pipes.

Besides this, check for dripping faucets and leaks around the toilets. Imagine what would happen if a faucet dripped at night and you didn’t notice it until the following day. You would have wasted a lot of water and money. Replace old faucets and repair leaks to prevent this from happening.

Frozen Pipes

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Frozen pipes are one of the most common plumbing problems in winter. When water freezes, it expands and puts pressure on the pipes. The result is cracked or even burst pipes. To prevent freezing, insulate with pipe insulation or heat tape.

You can also let a faucet drip slightly to keep water moving through the pipes. If a pipe does freeze, thaw it slowly with a hair dryer. Never use an open flame to thaw pipes, as this increases the fire risk.

Water Heater Issues

The water heater is in constant use in the winter. From taking long, hot showers to running the dishwasher, it works hard to keep up with demand. It leads to problems, such as a lack of hot water or strange noises from the tank. 

To prevent these issues, have your water heater serviced before winter sets in. Flush the tank to remove sediment and ensure the burner works correctly. Besides this, insulate the pipes leading to and from the water heater. The effort limits heat loss and keeps the water hotter for longer.

Toilet Issues

Winter weather can cause toilet problems, such as a slow flush or leaks. To prevent these issues, don’t put anything in the toilet besides toilet paper. Insulating the pipes to and from the toilet is also an excellent idea. 

This keeps the water in the tank from freezing and cracking the porcelain. Moreover, replace it with a newer model if you have an older toilet. Newer toilets use less water per flush, which saves you money on water bills.

Gutter and Drain Issues

Snow and ice cause gutters and drains to freeze. When this happens, the water has nowhere to go and backs up. To prevent this, keep gutters clean and clear of debris. This effort allows water to flow freely, even with snow and ice on the roof.

In addition, insulate outdoor pipes and drains to prevent freezing. If you have an in-ground sprinkler system, have a professional winterize it before the first frost.

Sump Pump Issues

The sump pump removes water from the basement or crawl spaces. However, if it freezes, it can’t do its job. Insulate the pipes leading to and from the sump pump to prevent this. 

Have a backup power source, such as a generator, in case of a power outage. Doing so ensures the sump pump can still run and remove water, even if the power is out.

Reduced Water Pressure

Decreasing water pressure happens when the water in the pipes freezes, reducing the amount of water flowing through. Other causes are leaks, which reduce water in the system, and mineral deposits, restricting water flow. The low water pressure causes reduced hot water and slow drainage.

Winterize Your Home On Time

From frozen pipes to leaky toilets, take the necessary steps to prevent any damage or inconvenience in the cold season. Water damage can lead to other issues such as mold growth and electrical problems. Winterize your home on time to avoid problems.

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