In this article we have some plumbing tips for winter for you. Even though the Dallas area doesn’t always have several days of freezing temperatures, it is always a good idea to take the necessary precautions to help prevent frozen pipes, pipe breaks and the need for water heater repairs.
Drain the Water from Outside Lines
Most homeowners in the Dallas area have water hoses hooked up to outside faucets. During the summer months, and really most of the year in North Texas, there is no issue with keeping them attached. However, in the winter months, it is best to unhook those and store them in your garage. If you were to leave the hose hooked to the faucet it is possible water could freeze inside the hose, making up in to the faucet and in to the pipe. Your pipe may then break, causing a water leak in your wall. This is one of the best ways to prevent freezing pipes.
Drain Your Water Heater
Most cities in the Dallas metroplex have water that will cause sediment to build up in the water heater. To prolong the life of your water heater it is recommended that you drain it to get the sediment out on a regular basis. It is similar to a car, if you maintain the water heater, it will last longer. If not, you may find your self in need of a water heater repair or even a new water heater. The sediment causes rust and rust in a water heater isn’t good news, it will cause a failure in the bottom or wall of the water heater.
Check for Leaks
The best time to repair a leak is when you find it. Since we do have freezing temperatures in the Dallas area during winter, it is important that you discover any leaks now before we experience freezing temperatures. Check faucets, pipes under the sink and toilets. If you think you have an issue, have a plumber come out and inspect the area.
Protect Pipes from Freezing
Exterior pipes, like a water faucet may need extra insulation to help reduce the chance of freezing. You can purchase foam covers from most hardware stores to put over the pipe to help shield it from the weather. This works best on water faucets that come out of the ground and stick up above ground. The faucets located on the side of a home that enter in to the wall are not as receptive to this type of winter preparation. Some of these pipes run through you foundation and can cause the need for foundation repair if left unattended for a time.
Circulate Warm Air
When colder temperatures do come to Dallas, make sure you keep warmer air circulated in the house. This is especially important for any pipes that are located on exterior walls. If possible, keep the cabinets open to allow the warmer air to reach the pipes easier.
Know Where Your Water Main is Located
Most new homes built in the Dallas area have valves located in the flower bed. They typically have a black top and are located in the corner of the bed closest to the door of the house. Make sure you know the location of this valve so that if a pipe break occurs, you will be able to quickly shut the water to the house off.
Keep the Thermostat above 55
When you leave or before you go to sleep overnight, make sure your thermostat is set at 55 degrees or above. If your home is lower that 55 degrees the chances of pipes freezing are much more likely. Many thermostats today have programmable options or even a way to operate temperatures off your phone.
For all of you plumbing needs, contact us. We have no drive-time charges and serve the entire Dallas area, including: Garland, Plano, Frisco, Rockwall, Allen and Rowlett.