Winterizing water pipes How to keep them cold

Frozen and broken water pipes are a nightmare. They cause not only floods and other serious water problems, but also structural damage to the ground, the basement and parts of the house. Winter, far from it, is not conducive to plumbing and pipes, and if they are not built for the winter, it is likely that you are spending some money on expensive repairs. Save your pipes against winter damage and follow the steps below to winterize water pipes.

  • 1. Shut off the water system if you leave the house for a while. Open faucets and indoor showers to drain. Then remove the water from the toilet tanks. You can use an air compressor to siphon any remaining water from the lines. Discharge water from the toilet bowls and add antifreeze solution to the residual water. Then focus on outdoor plumbing. Close the ventilation duct located in the basement of some homes and open the outside faucets to drain them. When all faucets are open, return to the vent and turn the cap to empty the rest of the water. Do not forget to empty the buried sprinkler too. When you are sure there is no more water to freeze and burst pipes, turn off the faucet and close all faucets.

  • 2. Insulate water pipes, especially those exposed and located in unheated areas (garage, basement and crawl spaces). You can use insulation tape, an electrical cord that produces heat, to cover the pipes. Use the same material to wrap the outside faucets. Instead of the insulation tape, you can use fiberglass insulation, molded foam rubber sleeves, rags or plastic.

  • 3. Leave the tap open and let the water run. Do it especially when the temperature is below freezing. While this may increase your water bill, you can reduce the risk of freezing pipes by keeping the water moving. No need for a torrential flow; tiny drops of water are enough.

  • 4. Replace or seal broken pipes early. There is no better guarantee for winter frost damage than cracked and worn pipes. So do a quick inspection. Also be sure to caulk the hoses to prevent leaks.

  • 5. Monitor your water flow regularly. If there is no water in some parts of the house, check for a frozen pipe in the basement, crawlspace or kitchen cabinets and bathroom. bath. When you have located the frozen pipe, use a hair dryer to blow heat on the pipe. Do not use a naked flame. If there is no water throughout the house, call a plumber to identify leaks and frozen pipes in your city's water utility.

Do not neglect the pipes. Just as you need coats and winter mittens to survive the winter, your pipes must be prepared for the coming cold. Whether it's your weekend home or your main home, be sure to winterize your water pipes. For more help when winterizing water pipes, contact your trusted plumber.

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