Winters in Maryland can sometimes bring frigid temperatures, icy weather, and strong winds—which can wreak havoc on your home’s plumbing if it’s not protected. Fortunately, there are measures that can be taken to keep your pipes from freezing, or worse, bursting. In order save yourself from costly repairs, prepare your home for winter with these simple tips from Howard County’s number one plumbing company, Heil Plumbing:
- Insulate water pipes in unheated areas. Water lines that run through unheated areas of your home—like the attic, garage, or basement crawl space—are susceptible to freezing during the winter months if they are uninsulated. Add a layer of insulation by wrapping them with foam sleeves or installing heat tape.
- Winterize outdoor faucets. Your outdoor faucets are directly exposed to the elements, so it’s best to disconnect and drain all hoses and to shut off the outdoor water supply valve. Once it’s shut off, you can open the outdoor hose bibs to allow water to drain from your pipes. If they are not drained, water in the outdoor hoses or spigots could freeze and create pressure, giving a pipe the opportunity to burst.
- Drain backflow preventers on your lawn irrigation system. Turn the main shut off valve off to the irrigation system. Blow the water out of the lines, and switch your gauge to the ‘rain setting.’ Turn on the valves to release the pressure in the pipes, then turn the valves back off. If the backflow device is outside, it needs to be removed for the winter and re-installed in the spring to prevent damages.
- Keep your heat on. Set the thermostat at least 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure all areas of the house, including basements and attics, stay well above freezing temperatures.
- Have your furnace inspected. Heating your home keeps more than just you and your family comfortable, it also keeps the pipes in your home warm enough to usually avoid freezing up. If your furnace is on the fritz, your pipes could be vulnerable to freezing.
- Open cabinets and drip indoor faucets. If you have rooms in your home that are cooler than others, or simply for extra precaution, leave your cabinet doors open and your faucets dripping. This allows heat to circulate to the pipes directly under your sinks, and the constant flow of water will deter freezing.
- Find and seal drafts. If you find a draft anywhere in your home, seal it up. Where there are cracks, cold air can enter your home and warm air can escape, making your furnace work harder and leaving your plumbing vulnerable.
- Locate your main shut off valve. In the case of a broken pipe, water may quickly flood your home. Make sure you know where the shut off valve is before a plumbing emergency occurs.
- Call a professional! If you want to be sure you have winterized your home properly, call a plumber. A professional plumbing company can inspect your home for plumbing issues, find leaky pipes, and repair any issues they may discover. If your pipes are already frozen, a plumber can give you advice and assistance in thawing it. If your pipes have burst, emergency plumbing services are also available.
Making sure your home is winterized before freezing temperatures strike can save you lots of time, money, and frustration down the road.
Residential Plumbing Repair Services in Howard County, MD
Whether you need pipe repair, faucet replacement, or emergency services for a burst water pipe in Howard County, Maryland, Heil Plumbing is the plumbing contractor to call. We offer 24-hour emergency plumbing services to homes and businesses throughout the area.
The Heil Difference
We’re dedicated to offering the highest quality residential and commercial plumbing services for every customer. Our plumbers are available to respond to your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Our residential and commercial plumbers in Columbia and Ellicott City cover every need, from simple fixture repairs to complex drain and sewer problems.
While we are based in Jessup, Maryland, our plumbing contractors also service Catonsville, Columbia, Ellicott City, Odenton, Clarksville, Elkridge, Fulton, Laurel, and Severn.