Preventative Winter Maintenance for Water Pipes & Vacant Homes

WINTER MAINTENANCE

Don’t let winter weather catch you unprepared. The following tips will help you prevent the expense and inconvenience of frozen and broken pipes.

  • Regularly check your plumbing. Perform preventative maintenance and repair all leaks and seepage.
  • Disconnect all garden hoses from outside hose-bib faucets.
  • Shut down and drain all lawn-sprinkler systems.
  • Know where your (not the Utility’s) primary shut-off valve for water is located and how it operates. If you don’t have one, consider having a plumber install a stop and drain valve.
  • Don’t turn off the heat while you’re on vacation. Instead, lower the thermostat, but not below 55 degrees.
  • Insulate water pipes. Exposed pipes are especially vulnerable to freezing weather.

VACANT HOMES

If you leave your house for the winter months, take the following steps to protect pipes from freezing:

  • Use your home’s stop and drain valve to shut off your water.
  • Turn off and drain your water heater.
  • Open indoor and outdoor faucets to drain pipes (after you have turned the water off).
  • Pour motor home-type anti-freeze in your toilet bowl to prevent freezing. Also consider pouring it in shower drains and “P” traps under sinks.

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