As summer switches to fall, it's likely that you're trading your flip flops for boots and your t-shirts for sweatshirts. You may be ready, but did you know that your home needs help to prepare for the cold months ahead? If not properly taken care of, fall and winter weather can wreak havoc on your plumbing system. There are plenty of things that you can do on your own for your Chicago home, but Flatley's Plumbing Express can help you with the tough stuff. The first day of fall is September 22nd - will your plumbing system be ready?
Insulate Your Pipes
We may not have to worry about it yet, but freezing temperatures will reach us eventually! Pipes are susceptible to freezing any time the temp drops low enough. When they do freeze, they can burst, resulting in thousands of dollars in water damage and pipe repair.
The best way to prevent this, other than keeping your home properly heated, is insulating your pipes. Self-adhesive pipe insulation is readily available at most home supply stores and it’s easy to apply. You can easily do it on your own! A DIY project like this can take one day or several, depending on how many pipes you have access to. You simply cut the insulation to the right size and attach it to your pipes.
Keep in mind that there are hidden pipes throughout your system. Some are located underground while others are behind walls or in hard to reach areas. These pipes can’t be insulated, but you can protect them on cold nights by leaving your faucets running at a drip and keeping your home heated to 60 degrees or higher.
Disconnect Your Hose
Spring and summer are over, and it’s likely that you won’t be spending as much time watering the lawn or garden as it gets cooler. As the seasons transition, you should disconnect any outdoor hoses from your home's exterior and drain. Store the hose somewhere dry for the cooler months, and be sure to shut off any water access valves leading to the outdoor spigot.
Inspect Your Water Heater
Your water heater works extra hard during the cooler months to keep the warm water flowing through your taps, showers, and plumbing appliances. While it does need routine professional maintenance, you can keep an eye on your own in between services. Before it gets too chilly outside, check your water heater for any signs of wear and tear. Rust, dents, leaks and any other warning signs should be addressed by a Flatley's professional immediately. If you're concerned about the inside of your tank, you can drain a portion of the water from your tank into a bucket. If there's any sediment build up or rust in the water you drain, you may be in need of replacement.
Seek Flatley's Help
Sump Pump Maintenance
Your sump pump protects your basement from harmful flooding that can damage your belongings and home structure. To ensure that it's ready to keep your basement dry in the event of inclement weather, you should have it maintained regularly. A professional will be able to tell you whether or not the discharge line is clear and the pump sensor is working properly. Instead of waiting for a storm to find out that your sump pump is broken, a professional will be able to fix it ahead of time.
Check for Leaks
Small leaks coming from a faucet will be easy for you to identify. More significant leaks that are deeper in your system may be hard to detect until something goes seriously wrong. If you're experiencing plumbing problems in your home, you may have a leak or blockage in your system. A Flatley's professional will be able to determine the condition of your plumbing system and appliances, make sure that they're leak free, and get them ready for the cooler weather.
Clogs are a common problem that many homeowners have to deal with at some point. They're bad for your plumbing, but they can be especially problematic in the cooler months. As fall and winter temperatures drop, blockages can result in areas with still water. These areas are even more susceptible to freezing, so they should be cleared by a professional ASAP. The leaves falling outdoors may be a beautiful sight, but you should keep in mind that they may end up in pipes near the outdoors.
Flatley's Plumbing Express offers a wide range of services that can help prepare your drain, sewer, and plumbing system for the colder months. Maintenance, repairs, replacements, hydro jetting, and camera inspections to name a few. If you're in need of plumbing services this season, call Flatley's today to schedule your service!