Winter weather can cause significant issues for your plumbing. Before inclement weather sets in, it’s best to put together a winterizing checklist to avoid costly problems. Use the following guide to prevent common issues and know when to call in a professional plumber.
Plumbing Problems to Expect This Winter
Leaks can develop in older pipes or after freezing in the pipe has caused damage. Leaking pipes can lead to an overall pipe failure, which can be hard to deal with during winter months. The best thing to do is to have the plumbing system inspected and to fix any leaking taps or pipes before deep winter sets in.
2. Clogged Drains
Although a drain can clog at any time of year, the increased usage during holiday time can increase the probability of problems. More food preparation, use of hot water and appliances, and extra guests using the bathroom can all cause stress to the plumbing system. As part of your pre-winter checklist and inspection, have any troublesome drains flushed and cleaned by a plumber. Make sure that visiting guests know what to keep out of the pipes and toilets, such as tissues and feminine hygiene products.
3. Frozen Pipes
This is one of the most common issues and can lead to broken, cracked, or burst pipes—and the resulting water damage or sewage back-ups. Any part of the plumbing system can freeze, from water to sewage drains and pipes. If your winters are typically long and extreme, it’s best to insulate the accessible pipes with foam insulation, heat tape, or electrical cables. During cold snaps, you can drip taps overnight to prevent freezing. Spacing out hot showers, dishwashing, and laundry during the week are better for those with septic systems. If pipes freeze and can’t be accessed or thawed, call in a plumber to help before costly damage occurs.
4. Frozen Septic Tank
If you do have a septic system, it should be winterized by insulating pipes, keeping the drain field clear from any human or vehicle traffic, and by using hot water equally throughout the week. Have the tank pumped before winter if it has been 2-3 years since the last pump-out to avoid sewage backups. If the tank freezes, this can prevent the bacteria within the tank from treating sewage, which leads to raw sewage leaching into the drain field or the tank overflowing.
If you need professional plumbers to help winterize or inspect your plumbing, contact Disponette Service. For over 40 years, this trusted, the family-owned company has served the greater Lexington, KY, area with complete plumbing and HVAC service and maintenance. The licensed and insured crew offer 24/7 emergency service, as well. Call (859) 255-7157 today to schedule an appointment or visit the website to see a full list of their services.
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