Our team at BEST Plumbing Service of Cincinnati is committed to helping customers protect their plumbing system all year round. On top of pulling out winter coats, adding an extra blanket to the bed, and stoking the fire, performing a quick inspection of your plumbing system can guarantee you stay safe and comfortable all winter long.
9 Winter Plumbing Tips
Frozen pipes are a serious concern when winter strikes. If it is consistently cold outside, the water inside your pipes can freeze, expanding your pipes, cutting off your water supply and affecting the structural integrity of your system. Instead of dealing with costly repairs, repiping, and water damage, as a result of frozen pipes, protect your plumbing by following our simple tricks.
9 tips for protecting your plumbing this winter:
- Make sure your pipes are insulated: When consistent freezing air meets your pipes, it can cause the water inside to freeze, forcing your pipes to expand, clog, or burst. The best way to combat this cold temperature exposure is to keep your pipes insulated by wrapping external pipes in fiberglass pipe insulation or plastic insulating wrap and using heat cable to further prevent cold air from reaching your pipes.
- Turn off water to outdoor faucets: Shutting off the water to your outdoor faucets can prevent ice from building up in your pipes. Don’t forget that after you turn off the water to these areas, use the bleeder cap with a bucket underneath to drain your faucets of any residual water left behind.
- Let your faucets drip: Even a small trickle of water coming from your sinks can keep these lines open and prevent freezing.
- If you are taking a trip, turn off your water main: When leaving your home for an extended period of time, take a moment to turn off your water altogether. This way, if there is any damage to your pipes, you won’t have to deal with the extensive water damage when you return.
- Have a professional check for leaks: Early leak detection is the best way to maintain the structural integrity of your plumbing. If you’re experiencing even a small leak and your pipes freeze, it can cause your pipes to burst, causing potential water damage and malfunctioning plumbing appliances.
- Disconnect water hoses: Residual water in your outdoor hoses can freeze—pushing ice back into your faucet and pipe—leading to leaks or cracks. Disconnecting these hoses and covering the faucet with a hose bib or insulated cover will further protect your outdoor plumbing.
- Seal off garages or crawlspaces: Your home’s plumbing is often hidden behind cabinets or in crawlspaces that are notoriously under-insulated. Sealing off and insulating these areas can keep warm air in and protect your plumbing.
- Drain your water heater: If your water heater isn’t properly maintained, sediment, hard water, and even rust can build up in your system. This buildup can cause inconsistent heating and damage to the system, leaving you without hot water when you need it most. Draining your water heater can prevent this buildup.
- Avoid clogged drains: Staying vigilant about what you pour down kitchen and bathroom sinks is especially important during winter months. Avoid putting materials, such as cooking oils, fat, and fibrous foods, down the garbage disposal. The chilly temperatures will cause these items to harden within your drains—leading to clogged drains and even burst pipes.
If you live in Cincinnati or any of the surrounding areas and need an experienced plumber to fix frozen pipes, insulate your plumbing, or service your home’s plumbing system, reach out to our skilled professionals at BEST Plumbing Service of Cincinnati. We are licensed plumbers with over 30 years of experience, who offer same-day service. Call us today at (513) 785-0957!