And just like that, fall is around the corner! As we get ready to kick off the new (chillier!) season, it’s important to make sure that your home’s plumbing system is ready for the shift. Today, let’s walk through some practical tips for plumbing maintenance in New Jersey, ideally helping you prevent any strain or issues.
Outdoor Plumbing Preparations
Before those cooler temps land, it’s wise to address outdoor plumbing areas that could be vulnerable.
- Disconnect Garden Hoses
It’s super important to disconnect and store garden hoses indoors. This simple step can prevent substantial damage, especially if you don’t have a frost-free spigot.
- Drain Sprinkler Systems
If your property has a sprinkler system, make sure you shut it down properly for the season. Draining it completely will help prevent water from freezing within the pipes, which could result in damage and costly repairs.
- Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Fallen leaves are synonymous with fall, and they have a knack for finding their way into your gutters and downspouts. Prevent clogs and potential water damage by clearing away any debris, making sure water can be safely drained away from your property.
Frozen, burst pipes can be a nightmare! And the temps will drop faster (and sooner) than you might think. Here’s what you should do:
- Identify Vulnerable Pipes
Take a tour of your home and locate pipes in unheated areas such as basements, attics, and crawl spaces. These are the pipes most at risk of freezing.
- Add Insulation
Protect vulnerable pipes by adding pipe sleeves or wrapping them in heat tape. This extra layer of insulation can be the difference between free-flowing water and a plumbing emergency.
Water Heater Check
Your water heater deserves some attention too! Fall water heater maintenance should include:
- Drain Sediment
Over time, sediment can accumulate in your water heater’s tank, affecting its efficiency. As the temperatures cool down, it’s an opportune moment to drain this buildup and make sure your water heater operates optimally and efficiently.
- Check Temperature Settings
With fall’s cooler weather, you might be inclined to turn up the water temp. Just remember: setting it too high can result in scalding water, while setting it too low can lead to bacteria growth. Take a look here for a quick guide to adjusting water heater temperatures.
Faucet and Fixture Inspection
Fall is an excellent time to inspect your faucets and fixtures for any issues.
- Check for Leaks
A dripping faucet is not just an annoyance; it’s a potential source of wasted water and increased bills. Read this blog about faulty toilet flappers to see just how much water can be lost by overlooking drips and dribbles.
- Inspect Seals and Caulking
Damaged seals and deteriorating caulking around sinks, tubs, and showers can lead to water seepage and damage. Replace or repair these areas as needed to prevent moisture-related issues. You’ll be glad you did!
Drain and Sewer Maintenance
Keep your drains and sewer lines clear with these steps:
- Professional Inspection
Consider scheduling a professional inspection of your drains and sewer lines. A thorough assessment can catch any underlying issues and ensure your plumbing is in optimal condition.
- Preventive Measures
Nobody has time for clogs! Install drain screens to catch hair and debris, minimizing the chance of a blockage.
You know how that saying goes… Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it, right? Having a plan for dealing with fall and winter plumbing emergencies offers serious peace of mind, plus can save you from a scramble in the moment.
- Know Your Shut-Off Valves
Familiarize yourself with the locations of shut-off valves for water, gas, and electricity. This knowledge can be invaluable during an emergency.
- Emergency Kit
Create a basic plumbing emergency kit with tools like a plunger, pipe wrench, and plumber’s tape. These tools can help you manage minor issues until professional help arrives.
What’s Your Takeaway?
We want you to be able to enjoy the season without any avoidable stress or plumbing frustrations. And this starts with just routine maintenance and preventive care! Reach out to our team at Accurate Plumbing & Drain Cleaning with any questions at all – we’re here to help.