Winter can take a serious toll on your plumbing system. Without the right precautions, you could run into a number of issues – especially because of the freezing temperatures and increased usage around the holidays. It’s important to know about how winter impacts your plumbing so you can properly protect your home from problems like leaking or flooding. Here are some of the most common winter plumbing issues:
- Frozen or burst pipes: Water expands as it freezes, which means a frozen pipe is very susceptible to bursting and causing serious leaks or flooding. Though frozen pipes are most common with outdoor plumbing, they can also happen indoors along exterior walls or in uninsulated areas. To avoid this problem, winterize your pipes by wrapping any exposed pipes with an insulating material such as fiberglass, mineral wool, or polyethylene pipe insulation.
- Clogged drains: Particularly during the holiday season, clogged drains are a very common winter problem. As family gathers and holiday cooking commences, more food waste can travel down the garbage disposal or drain and cause a backup. To keep your drains flowing smoothly, avoid letting food items like fat, grease, oil, and coffee grounds go down your drain or garbage disposal.
- Water heater failure: Winter is a very taxing season for your water heater. Not only will your unit have to work extra hard to combat the cold temperatures, but it may also get increased usage with holiday guests or extra long showers. That’s why it’s important to schedule maintenance in the fall. A professional can help you drain your water heater and ensure your unit is ready to withstand the demands of winter.
- Flooding in the basement: Basement flooding can happen for a number of reasons, but one of the most common causes in the winter is snow melting. A damaged foundation or clogged drainage system allows snowmelt to seep indoors. To prevent flooding from snowmelt, you should thoroughly clean and inspect your outdoor drainage systems – all the way from your gutters to your storm drains. We also recommend testing your sump pump to ensure it is working effectively.
Your Local Plumbing Experts
Getting your plumbing winter-ready can feel overwhelming, especially without the right experience or tools. However, you don’t have to do it alone! The licensed plumbers at ClogPro have been serving homeowners throughout Portland OR and Vancouver WA for over 30 years. We are committed to providing you with the best in service and quality at an affordable price. Let us help get your plumbing winter ready – just give us a call today to get started!