Avoid winter plumbing issues around the house
Winter plumbing issues affect just about every type of building. Freezing pipes and other problems happen in residential, commercial and industrial zones, often leading to frustration and expensive repair.
The winter plumbing issues prevention experts at United Plumbing want to ensure that Portland and Gresham residents avoid such headaches. Check out these tips below to steer clear of costly plumbing problems in the cold.
Basic winter plumbing issues preparation
Keep water running during freezing conditions
An average household will waste about 10,000 gallons every year, so it is easy to see why most home owners are careful to fully shut off running water. However, a slight drip will prevent a pipe from freezing and bursting, and a burst pipe wastes far more water than a tiny drip overnight.
Open cabinets near plumbing or insulate the plumbing
The heat circulating in your home ought to be able to reach covered plumbing to help reduce the risk of frozen pipes. If it gets especially cold near these pipes, tape some foam padding around them to keep the pipes insulated from chilly air.
Increase the water heater temperature
Some home owners lower the temp on their water heater units during summer to save on energy costs. However, it will need to be set between 120 degrees and 130 degrees, depending on where you live and how cold it gets on an average night.
How to address catastrophic winter plumbing issues
Immediately contact a professional plumber if a pipe freezes and bursts
A burst pipe is a nasty shock to any home owner. However, keep your calm and immediately shut off the water flowing toward the burst pipe. Towels around the area will help absorb water before it can damage walls, insulation or other materials.
If you know which plumber or plumbing service installed the burst pipe, contact them right away. If not, run a quick search on a service like eLocalPlumber and get them to remove the burst pipe and install new plumbing so the water can flow again in your home.
Water heater replacement may be required
If you notice very little hot water during showers, your water heater might be failing. While this can happen any time, it is certainly among winter plumbing issues that will ruin the holiday spirit…no one wants a cold shower after making a snowman!
Have your water heater serviced at least once a year. If it is almost time to get it replaced, check around for holiday or year-end specials on water heaters.