While plumbing disasters can happen at any time of year, the winter months bring a new set of challenges. Many homeowners are proactive and ensure they have a full winter plumbing checkup before the icy weather sets in. The most common winter plumbing problems our pro team of plumbers at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Eastern Iowa are:

Frozen Pipes

Any area of your plumbing system can freeze if the pipes are unprotected, and the weather is cold enough – a common occurrence in our area. As soon as the weather turns cold, get your plumbing system checked to ensure any pipes that are at risk of freezing are protected. Some of the most common DIY methods for keeping the system flowing include keeping water slowly dripping so there is motion within the system. Hidden pipes in cabinets, beneath the main floor, or that are part of your outside system must be properly managed. If your plumbing system freezes, the first step is to ensure the water flow is turned off — and then call a professional plumber. Frozen pipes can burst and damage your home or foundation.

Water Heater Failure

There is nothing like a nice hot bath or shower – unless your water heater fails, right when you need it most. A standard water heater will typically perform for about ten years, after which it may need replacement. As the water within the tank must be kept at temperature, in the cold winter months it will be working much harder and is more likely to fail. If you have an older system, it may be time to replace it – especially if you are expecting guests during the holidays.

Clogged Drains

The holidays are an exciting time of year, but put a greater strain on your home’s drain system. With more foods being prepared, more use of the water system with visiting guests, and colder weather, you have a recipe for disaster. Many clogged drain issues occur during this time of year, and savvy homeowners who expect an influx of visitors often choose to have their drains cleared before the season to avoid a problem that no one will enjoy. If your toilet, sink, shower or other drain has clogged, let our team at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Eastern Iowa help you get your home back in order fast.

Septic Tank Bursts

In very cold weather, the line from home to the septic tank can freeze, or the tank itself burst. This is a more serious issue that requires immediate resolution. With a heavy snow cover, the septic tank is better protected, but there is increased risk for failure if the snow atop the system is compacted. It is the air within the snow cover that creates the insulation. Once the tank has burst, there is no other option than calling a plumber to help you get your system functioning as it should. Ensure you have your tank cleaned out before the winter weather gets serious. If you run into trouble, we are here to get you the help you need — fast.

Water Line Leak

A leak in your water line is never a good thing, but in the winter, a water leak can spell disaster. The pipes in your home may be older and more prone to splitting or developing holes. The most common winter factor to lead to a water line leak is a frozen line that splits the pipe. Rather than dealing with a leak in the icy winter months, taking steps to ensure your water line is in good shape can save you from a situation you would rather not experience. If the water line is already leaking, get a plumber in to fix the problem before it gets worse. The leak often gets larger, and the damage to your home or foundation can be very expensive to repair.