7 Plumbing Maintenance Tips to Follow This Fall and Winter
Posted by Drain King Plumbers on 31-10-2023
Depending on where you live and how cold the weather gets, there is some preparation and maintenance that you should consider for your plumbing before the winter season arrives. Fall is the ideal time to ensure your plumbing is safe and secured to face the upcoming lower temperatures.
If the proper precautions are not taken, it can lead to significant damage to the pipes, water supply, and more. You can also hire professional plumbers in Etobicoke to ensure everything is done correctly. So, to help you prepare for the cold winter months, here are some plumbing maintenance tips you should follow.
1. Check insulation around the pipes
Extreme cold temperatures can lead to frozen pipes, which can cause significant water damage to the house if they are not adequately insulated.
During the fall, check the insulation around the pipes to ensure they are sufficient and well-covered. Proper insulation will protect the lines from freezing and allow your heating system to work more efficiently since minimal heat is lost.
To ensure that your pipes are adequately insulated or to understand where improvement is needed, you can hire Drain King Plumbers in Etobicoke and GTA to assess your home. We can advise you on how to prepare your plumbing for the winter.
2. Shut off outside water valves
Water valves outside the house and in other uninsulated environments can become a source of ingress. These valves should be shut off, and you should insulate the piping outside the home.
Foam, insulating material, or towels can protect exposed pipes . Furthermore, in frigid temperatures, faucets should be allowed to drip slowly so that the water keeps flowing and does not freeze.
3. Clean your gutters
There are two main reasons to clean your gutters preemptively in the fall to prepare for winter. Firstly, more precipitation occurs during cold months, depending on where you live. If your gutters are not clean before it happens, the water can stay collected for longer durations and become unsanitary.
It can also seep into the house and cause water damage to the ceiling. Secondly, if you wait till winter to arrive before cleaning your gutters, it becomes more difficult. Working in the cold is much more challenging in winter than in the summer.
If it snows, getting to the drain becomes significantly more difficult in case there is a blockage.
4. Check/ test the sump pump
A sump pump drains excess water through a discharge pipe and diverts it away from your home’s foundation. In Ontario, the building code from 2017 dictates that all homes must have sump pumps, which means that as a homeowner, you will have to check your sump pump or even test it so that you can prepare it for the winter.
Fall season is the ideal time to do so and make sure nothing is damaged, and if it is, to repair it. One of the ways you can test your sump pump is to pour a bucket of water into the sump pit. If everything works correctly, the pump should start draining the water.
If it does not start automatically, try cleaning the pump and the sump pit to remove dirt or debris. If it still doesn’t work, please call us, and our professional plumbers in Etobicoke and GTA will take care of the rest.
5. Seal the gaps
Over time, gaps can develop in areas where plumbing pipes enter your home. During the winter, cold air can blow through these gaps and not only cause the house to run the heating system constantly and lead to frozen pipes. Therefore, during the fall season, assess the lines and see where the gaps have formed.
You can use weather stripping, caulking, insulation, or a combination of the three to fill the gaps and keep your home insulated.
6. Check the water heater
As winter approaches, you and your family will need the water heater more often. It means the system will be working much harder than usual, so it is a good idea to check the water heater and ensure everything functions as it should.
You can flush your water heater to remove the sediment buildup and clogs that may have formed over time.
This task will allow the heater to operate efficiently and avoid failure at the time of need. We recommend that you call professional plumbers in Etobicoke to take care of the technical aspect of the maintenance, especially if you are unsure about it.
7. Sewer system maintenance
During the winter, people tend to stay indoors more, which means the sewer system related to cooking, laundry, and the bathroom is used a lot more. Fall is the best time to regularly maintain the sewer system to ensure your sewer system is operating in optimal condition.
Our licensed professional plumbers in Etobicoke and GTA can help you identify what areas of the plumbing need maintenance, repairs, or upgrades. With our upfront pricing, you get an estimate on the job and decide if you want to move forward.
Bonus Tip: You will probably not be using your water hose during peak winter so drain any water in the hose, disconnect it, and store it somewhere it doesn’t get too cold. If water remains in the hose, it can expand and cause the faucet or the hose to break.
Winter is a time when the plumbing of any household goes through its paces. Therefore, it is best to ensure your plumbing is up to the mark and ready to take on the winter.
Checking and maintaining the different points of potential failure in and around your house during the fall will allow you to have a seamless winter without any major breakdowns, leaks, or other issues.