Seasonal changes are significant to all of us. As the nights grow shorter or longer, as the weather gets colder or warmer, our behaviour changes. Your home is no different as the elements that the property is up against will change and the way your home needs to respond to it will be important.
But your home isn’t able to adjust without your help and when the winter comes, the water systems in your home will need some extra attention.
Let’s look at how you can easily prepare your home plumbing for the cold winter months or get it ready quickly if you need to.
Check for leaks
Leaks happen! (We should create a bumper sticker with that on!) Leaks do happen but it’s important to fix them when you spot them. A leaking tap will not only cause valuable water to be wasted, but in the winter months, you could create your very own ice rink.
What’s worse is a leaking outdoor faucet (also known as spigots or hose bibs) can do more harm instead, than out. The water from the dripping or leaking can freeze and then work its way back through the pipe. Freezing water expands, and whether your pipe is made from plastic or copper, this means cracks – and that can cause big issues in the big thaw and when you use the pipes.
Check for leaks and call us if you spot any that need emergency repair.
Turn off outside water supplies
Some of your outside plumbing won’t be used in the winter, so it makes no sense to leave them in live operation. The thing to do is isolate the supply and leave them that way until the spring comes back around.
To do this, shut off the supply inside the property at the stop valve and then empty the pipe or hose by running the tap until dry.
This will remove all the standing water in the pipe or hose and stop the risk of the water inside it freezing, expanding, and causing you more issues.
Remove hoses and outside summer features
Some outside features can simply be removed and stored until the warmer weather comes back. Garden hoses, fountains, sprinklers, and similar are best off drained and dried and then popped into the garage and stored dry until you need them again.
Leaving these outside for the colder weather to take hold will destroy them. Even if you’re going to use the hose in the winter to wash off the truck or clean the dog, it’s recommended that you store it inside between uses.
Cover your outdoor faucet
Some items can’t be removed though, your outside faucet is one of those. The simplest and most proven tip here is to head to your local hardware store and buy a faucet cover. This material is insulated and will keep the faucet from freezing.
Measure up your faucet and get a ‘sleeve’ that fits over the faucet like a coat, keeping your water supplier safe from freezing and cracking during those cold months.
Clear the debris from fall
One other area that can cause issues if not well-maintained is the debris from fall. As the seasons change, the leaves shed, and the wildlife moves a lot of it about, causing leaves and twigs to find their way into your home and garage.
Drains and gutters in particular may well be covered and struggling to drain correctly due to debris. The snow and the extra rain will spell disaster for your drainage and could cause other issues like broken or cracked gutters, or damp on the walls from water falling in contact with the exterior wall.
Get ready – winter holds no prisoners!
The harsh winter in Colorado isn’t forgiving, but it is expected. Planning ahead, even with some simple tips like these will put your home in a better place to battle through the colder times.
If you spot an issue earlier, it’s usually easier and cheaper to fix.
Need help with your plumbing or drainage? Give us a call now and we’ll arrange an inspection.