For any homeowner looking to protect their investment this holiday season, winterizing your pipes is a crucial step in the right direction. As temperatures begin to drop, exposed plumbing pipes take the brunt of the damage. If you are unprepared then it is only a matter of time before a pipe freezes and ultimately bursts. A burst pipe spells trouble for your whole home, and the resulting water damage can be quite extensive. Often, we as homeowners do not know the true extent of the damage. Most water damage is hidden, and it seeps into cracks and crevices. Then, it won’t be long before mold begins to grow. You have an opportunity to prevent water damage by winterizing your pipes this year.
If you are intent on winterizing your home’s plumbing system yourself, be wary. One mishap could lead to considerable water damage in your home. It is often best to schedule such service with a professional. Then, you’ll receive guaranteed service without any hassle, all for the right price.
First, let us begin indoors. It is here that most of your plumbing connects. Start in the most common areas for plumbing, including the kitchen, bathroom, basement, crawlspace, or attic – anywhere water flows into and out of each day. If there are exposed water lines in any of these rooms, consider insulating them properly. You can buy affordable pipe insulation at any local hardware store. Insulation is inexpensive, easy, and quite effective overall.
Furthermore, if you have not replaced the insulation in your attic or basement, consider doing so at the same time. Proper insulation can prevent cold air from entering the home and causing damage.
Outdoor Winterization Steps
Next, turn your attention outdoors. Many of the water lines to your kitchen and bathroom are exposed pipes outside. You must be conscious of these. Where possible, insulate these pipes using the pipe insulation you picked up at the hardware store. If you have a garden hose, be sure to disconnect it from the spigot and drain it, then store it properly. Next, if you have a sprinkler system, flush it completely.
Preventing Frozen Pipes – Tips & Tricks
As experts, we have stumbled upon more than a few worthwhile tips and tricks to prevent frozen pipes over the years. Here are a few simple techniques you can utilize at home:
- Dripping Faucet – At night, when temperatures are below freezing, turn on any faucets along exterior walls. The slow drip of water will prevent the pipes from freezing and eliminate pressure in the system.
- Cabinets – Open the kitchen and bathroom cabinets to allow warm air to circulate within.
- Cracks – If you notice any cracks or holes around the exterior walls or foundation, fill them with spray foam insulation and caulk to prevent cold air from entering.