Winter has arrived and it has brought some of the chilliest days in over a century. It is crucial, now more than ever,to make sure your home is a safe haven to survive such extreme weather. In sub zero temperatures, home maintenance can feel like a big daunting task. Here are some tips to handle common winter plumbing problems which I hope will make plumbing jobs seem less difficult and tedious:
1. Frozen Pipes
It’s common to have pipes frozen due to extreme cold weather. This usually occurs when the water pressure from the main is high and the temperatures are freezing. To avoid broken and frozen pipes, make sure to leave the tap opened a little to let water flow continuously. The constant flow of water prevents the pipe from freezing. IMPORTANT: Be sure nothing is blocking the drain to avoid flooding.
In addition to this you can try thawing the frozen area of the pipe with hot water. If you do notice a frozen pipe, turn off the main water supply to prevent the frozen pipe from bursting. You will find the main switch underneath your kitchen sink or outside your home. Do not try to “do it yourself” in such a situation and call for professional help immediately.
2. Poor Heating
Poor heating in severe cold weather is arguably the worst thing that can happen to any home. Regular maintenance of heating systems, especially before winter, and even during winter is recommended. This is because the heating system runs at full pressure during sub zero temperatures. Get in touch with a gas plumber who can identify the real culprit behind the poor heating. This is possibly not DIY-able, so don’t try your hand at it. An OHM meter test can tell if the element needs to be replaced.
3. Failing Hot Water Systems
Unfortunately, the hot water system has to fail when it is needed the most, i.e. in the winter. Ideally, the service of the hot water system should be done well before winter approaches, since the hot water system is not being pushed to full capacity. Hot water system units may seem out of order, especially when a homeowner takes a shower. Some suggest that no gap between showers can prevent from the hot temperature to cool down. However, it’s good to give 10 minutes gap between two showers. This keeps the temperature consistent.
Some plumbing problems in winter are unavoidable due to increasingly lower temperatures. However, with these tips, the problems can be prevented and sometimes even avoided. Make sure to find a licensed plumber who can answer all your plumbing needs.
Cover photo via ldr4service