How to Prep Your Home’s Plumbing for Winter Weather

House wrapped in a scarf

Winter Weather Checklist for Your Home’s Plumbing

As the nation braces for winter blizzards, bomb cyclones, and everything in between, it’s important to maintain your plumbing system to prevent a complete shutdown.

Sometimes, a few preventive steps can spare you from frozen pipes and flooding during a storm. Follow this checklist to help prevent plumbing damage before inclement weather strikes. Feel free to ask your Benjamin Franklin plumbing professionals how to help minimize weather risks!

Do on Your Own:

  • Before an emergency, locate the water line shut-off valve and label the valve with a tag for easy identification. Make sure all household members know where it is located.
  • Plumbing pipes in an unheated area (such as an attic, crawl space, or garage) are at risk of freezing. Inexpensive foam pipe insulation should be enough for moderately cold climates.
  • For severe climates, wrap exposed pipes with thermostatically controlled heat tape.
  • Cool or heat your home as much as possible prior to storm.
  • A frozen garden hose can actually burst an interior pipe. Make sure garden hoses are disconnected, drained, and stored before the first hard freeze.
  • If you are leaving your home for an extended period of time, make sure the furnace is set no lower than 55 degrees. Shut off the main water supply. Drain your system by opening all faucets and flushing the toilets.

Call a Professional:

  • If pipes in exterior walls have frozen in the past, it could be due to inadequate or poorly installed insulation. In this instance you will need to open up the wall and increase insulation. If that doesn’t work, the pipe may have to be professionally rerouted.
  • Hire a contractor to check the structural ability of your roof to sustain heavy weight from snow accumulation or water.
  • Contact Benjamin Franklin Plumbing to discuss any pipe insulation concerns.

24/7 Emergency Service

If your home encounters a plumbing emergency during inclement weather, call Benjamin Franklin Plumbing for a fast fix. For further peace of mind, our Protection Plans offer an annual plumbing inspection to detect potential water pipe cracks ahead of time.