Winter is swiftly approaching, and many individuals are starting to feel the effects of the changing weather and chilly temperatures. If you reside in an area where winter brings extended periods of freezing temperatures, it is important to prepare your plumbing pipes to avoid potential problems. Therefore, it is crucial to take the necessary steps to protect your home’s plumbing from the cold when temperatures drop. Moreover, it is essential to pay attention to your drainage systems during the winter season and ensure they are in optimal condition. A foundation without a proper drainage system is vulnerable to water runoff, particularly during the winter months. Cracks in the foundation can also jeopardize the structural integrity of the building. Additionally, stagnant water can lead to wood rot, posing a risk to the overall integrity of the structure.
Why Are Pipes Prone To Damage During Winter?
Your water pipes risk freezing anytime the temperature of the outside atmosphere reaches zero degrees Celsius. This is because water usually expands in nature, and as the water in the pipes freezes, it expands, and your pipe doesn’t expand with it, causing it to rupture. The water expands in a closed environment, and it causes intense pressure on the pipe’s inner walls. The pressure is exerted on the inner walls of iron, lead, or PVC plastic. Even if the pipe is strong enough to bear the pressure exerted by the expanded water, frequent exertion of pressure consistently can make the pipe weaken gradually and burst at some point later.
How To Prepare Your Pipes And Drains
Prevention, they say, is better than cure. Therefore, preparing pipes for cold spells isn’t challenging, and you can take several easy steps.
- Inspect Your Drains Thoroughly. Check all parts of your drainage system to ensure the whole system is free from debris and ready to cope with whatever the elements might throw at it. Blocked gutters and downpipes prevent excess water from flowing from the roof correctly, causing flooding in or around the property.
- Insulate Your Pipes. Insulation is one of the best ways to fight against frost damage and isn’t as expensive as you might initially imagine. Frozen pipes increase the risk of water outages. It is even more harmful to your property if the extreme cold can lead to the bursting of your pipes. You can prevent the quick thawing of your pipes through proper insulation. You can quickly tackle this problem by insulating the most vulnerable pipes in your home. The insulation will keep them functioning throughout winter.
- Fix Leaking Pipes And Drips. At the end of summer, take a trip around your property, and inspect the taps to see any leaks. If you find any, patch them up using a patch kit or get a plumber to help fix them. If the pipe services your heating or water mains, you should use the services of a professional. Avoid repairing these with DIY kits because doing this can be dangerous.
- Take Care Of Your Property’s Temperature. Set your central heating to come on for at least 15 minutes at regular intervals during the day (usually two per day) while you’re away from home. This will guarantee a steady water flow throughout, stopping the water from freezing and avoiding any damage to your pipes. It is tempting to keep your heating off to save money and resources, but throughout the colder months, even when you’re not away, you should try to have your heating on for short periods in a low-temperature setting.
How To Manage Frozen Pipes
If you suspect a frozen pipe, there are a couple of things you can do to try and clear the blockage. First, after locating the suspected blocked pipe, it is vital to apply gradual, gentle heat to melt away the icy obstruction. For example, setting up a nearby space heater or wrapping the pipes in towels soaked in hot water should allow a slow thaw. You can also contact a drainage professional.
To maintain your system’s efficiency and avoid common winter problems, it is important to take certain precautions. Cold temperatures, along with persistent wind, ice, and snow, can cause damage to various aspects of your home, including your plumbing. By following the above suggestions, you can reduce the likelihood of plumbing or drainage emergencies during this dreary season. If you require drainage system services, don’t hesitate to reach out to Dry Jersey. Our team of experts is ready to assist you.