Winter is in full swing, and Jack Frost is blowing that icy chill our way! Not only can winter be uncomfortably cold, but it’s often stressful as well. Most people want their homes to be warm, inviting and stress free during the winter months. Unfortunately, one of the most common issues for homeowners this time of year is their plumbing. Here are 5 of the biggest winter plumbing issues, along with some tips on how to prevent them....because come on, there’s nothing warm or cozy about a clogged toilet!
1. Hot Water Heater...check!
Nobody wants to be a victim of that rush of freezing water while taking their morning shower, and during the cold months, it’s even worse! There could be a few reasons for a water heater that isn’t doing its job: a faulty heating element, blown pilot pipes, or sediment deposits could all be issues. It’s important to have regular maintenance on your water heater by a plumbing professional who can make sure that it's in top condition.
2. Septic Tank and Sewer Line Backup
A sewer line backup is something we all cringe at the thought of. Often times people don’t check the waste levels of their septic tanks regularly. Understandably, this is not something that people want to think about, but during the winter, it is important to have the septic tank treated and pumped. The expense of dealing with a backup in the winter is much higher due to frozen ground and pipes, so it’s best to take charge before an issue arises.
3. Outdoor Kitchen Sink Wall
Most people may not have a clue what this one is. In a lot of cases, homes are designed with the kitchen sink pipes on the outside of the wall so that a window can be installed. Due to the elements, the pipes are likely to freeze. To keep your water lines from becoming frozen and ultimately useless, open the cabinets in your home. This will allow warm air to flow and keep the pipes heated.
4. Clogged Drains and Gutters
Leaves, debris and snow can block up the gutters and drains of your home. This can cause water to pool and freeze into “ice dams” during the winter, which allows water to leak into your home. The best way to avoid this is to flush your gutters and drains with a hose, or for a more permanent solution, you can install gutter covers to keep the debris out for good!
5. Frozen Pipes
This is one of the most common winter plumbing issues. Exposed pipes can freeze and eventually burst, which can be costly to repair. There are a couple of ways to get around this, firstly, identify the exposed pipes. Once you’ve discovered where they are, they need to be insulated and kept warm, so wrap them in heat tape to keep the warm air inside.
It is important to have regular plumbing check ups, and in the long run, it is always cheaper to maintain than to replace. At F.H. Furr we take care of you and your home so that you can enjoy comfort in the midst of the cold season!