7 Ways To Prepare Your Plumbing For Fall
The coming of Fall means a change in temperature, shedding of leaves and shorter days ahead. Have you considered checking the one area that makes up most of your routine?
Getting your house ready for Fall involves having your plumbing system serviced. However, it’s not required to replace the entire system if you happen to notice any irregularities in your water flow or pipe condition. You’ll just need a local plumber to attend to and resolve your plumbing concerns as the new season arrives.
Whether you live in cold temperate areas or not, it’s best to plan ahead and schedule a thorough inspection to keep your plumbing in tip-top condition. Doing so also prevents significant losses spent for large repairs and replacement.
Why You Need a Plumbing Maintenance Service
Plumbing is one of the most used and functional systems in both houses and buildings but is often neglected when it comes to accomplishing regular upkeep. It’s undoubtedly true that your sinks, toilets and water heaters heavily rely on drain pipes and other plumbing fixtures.
Devoting enough time and attention for inspection won’t only minimize your expenses but also offer greater convenience to your family and future guests. Here are effective ways to prepare your plumbing for the Fall season and avoid costly repairs:
1. Check for Potential Leaks
Dripping faucets are an example of common leaks that occur in one’s home. It’s safe to check around the tubs, sinks and showers to see any signs of leaks. That way, you can easily determine the unusual increase in your water bill and resolve the problem right away. According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), homeowners can save around 10 percent on water bills upon fixing the leaks.
It’s also good to have your plumbing fixtures regularly cleaned to detect any issues that affect their durability and performance. For instance, kitchen sinks that have small gaps or cracks can produce leaks inside the cabinet. Leaving it unnoticed can damage not only the countertops but also the pipes.
2. Clean Your Sump Pump
A sump pump is a device commonly found in the basement and is used to prevent excess water flow from flooding the area. It’s important to check its condition before the fall season to ensure that it’s free from debris or any form of dirt build-up.
You may remove the lid for inspection and pour water into it to test if it operates efficiently. It’s also good to insulate the device to help it thrive in extreme temperatures.
3. Drain Your Water Heater
Rust and sediments have the potential to form inside the water heater and settle at the bottom of the tank over the months. It’s best to conduct preventive measures to help you combat the chilly weather when winter comes.
Flushing off puddles of water is one way to keep your water heater in good condition. Before you inspect the system, you need to shut off the power supply first for your safety. Adjusting the water temperature up to 120 degrees F is necessary to save you money but be careful not to go overboard to prevent the system from scalding.
Your water heater can easily deteriorate without proper inspection. A professional plumber can tell if the tank needs a major repair or replacement.
4. Unclog the Pipes
Grease, dust and food particles are a common cause of blocked pipes. Falling leaves, twigs and sludge also contribute to clogging the pipeline especially if placed outdoors. Pipe tubes may acquire significant damage over time if left unchecked.
It’s good to know how you can maintain your drainage systems to reduce the risk of potential clogs. Failing to remove them may cause unwanted pipe bursts which can affect not only your finances but also your daily activities.
You may also want to clean the gutters to allow free flow of water within the pipe system. This involves removing the debris and accumulated dirt from the gutters.
5. Wrap and Insulate Your Pipes
When water starts to freeze, it expands and causes your pipes to burst out - and it can happen overnight. Covering both your indoor and outdoor pipes with insulation can prevent them from reaching their breaking point.
By doing a comprehensive inspection, you can easily locate tiny holes and cracks within the pipes. Sealing them using an adhesive can help protect your pipes while avoiding structural damage around your property.
You can also check for exposed pipes and buy an additional insulation if you must. Asking for professional assistance helps to guarantee a successful installation without worrying about the outcome.
6. Turn Off Your Outdoor Plumbing
Some homeowners tend to focus more on indoor plumbing that they forget about the outdoor faucets and garden hoses. It’s important to disconnect these fixtures including the sprinklers from the main supply to keep them from breaking. Not turning off the shut-off valve can leave them freezing out when the winter breeze hits hard.
It’s best to shut off the water supply and allow your irrigation systems to operate until excess fluid runs out. If it’s not possible to turn it off, insulating them using a heat tape can be an alternative solution.
7. Get Help from Your Local Plumber
Fixing toilet flappers or dripping faucets may sound easy, but for other jobs that require comprehensive procedures to complete the task, it’s always safe and convenient to have a professional plumber to assist you.
Make sure to prepare and follow a plumbing checklist to help you prepare for the fall season and minimize household expenses in the future. Conducting a routine check is also necessary to help reduce water consumption and safeguard your property from significant damage.
Guest Contributor, Sofia Hann