The arrival of fall tells us that winter isn’t far away, so it’s time to get your plumbing system ready for colder weather. Following these essential fall plumbing tips can make the task easier.
Put Away Your Garden Hoses
To keep your hoses in good condition so you can use them next year, disconnect and drain each one. Then, roll them up and store them in a spot where they won’t be exposed to freezing temperatures, like the basement.
Winterize Your Outdoor Hose Bib
If your bib is equipped with an indoor shutoff, close it then go outside and open the bib spigot and let any remaining water drain out. Lastly, cover the bib with a foam insulator for an extra layer of protection against freezing and bursting.
Protect Vulnerable Pipes From Freezing
Adding protection to vulnerable water pipes can prevent freezing and let you avoid the headaches of dealing with ruptures and water damage. First, install insulated foam sleeves on pipes situated in unheated areas, like the garage or basement. If you have accessible pipes running through an exterior wall, you should protect them with heat cable that’s controlled by an automatic thermostat.
Perform Water Heater Maintenance
Since you’re tackling plumbing maintenance, it’s the ideal time to drain and flush sediment from your water heater tank, and make sure that the pressure relief valve is functioning properly. You should also adjust the unit’s thermostat setting to 120 degrees, and install insulated foam sleeves on first four feet of hot water piping coming from the tank. If your appliance is older and not well-insulated, you should also add an insulated tank blanket to limit heat losses.
Check Your Sump Pump
To prevent damage from basement flooding and water intrusions during the fall and winter, this is a good time to test your sump pump’s functionality and clear any accumulated debris from the sump pit. If you don’t already have one, invest in a backup battery so your pump works during a power outage.
For help winterizing your Portland-area home with these fall plumbing tips, contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).