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Winter Plumbing Maintenance Tips
Some of these tips may go against your better instincts of conserving water and heat. However, the extra steps and expense is nothing compared to a hefty repair bill. Here’s what to do:
Keep garage doors closed, when there are water supply lines in or above the garage that can freeze in extreme temperatures.
Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing, mainly if your sinks are on an exterior wall. (PLEASE NOTE: If you have small children, REMOVE any harmful cleaners and household chemicals.)
Let cold water drip from a faucet supplied by pipes that are exposed to the cold. By running water through the pipe—even at only a trickle—it helps prevent the pipes from freezing.
Keep the thermostat set at the same temperature during night and day. During a cold snap, it is not the time to set back the thermostat at night to save money on your heating bill. We would also recommend turning the temperature up a couple degrees during extreme colds to combat the bitter cold drafts that may enter into your home.
If you plan to be away from your home during cold weather, leave the heat on while you are gone. However, make sure it is set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.
For long term prevention, add insulation to attics, basements, and crawl spaces. Insulation will maintain higher temperatures in those areas. Also, insulation will prevent drafts, seal cracks and openings around windows, doors, and at sill plates, where the house rests on its foundation.
If you notice that there is no water coming from a faucet or other plumbing fixture, call a professional plumbing contractor. At Lifeline, we have electronic pipe thawing machines that will send a current through the pipes to safely thaw the lines and avoid costly repair bills.