Leaks in your home's water lines are bad enough, but do you know what makes it worse? ICE. For starters, water is one of the only things that expands when it becomes a solid. That's great for making ice cubes, but not so much for your pipes.
While freezing temperatures aren't too much of a concern in the warmer parts of the country, that doesn't mean you can't find yourself suffering the effects of frozen water pipes. It only takes one night of low temperatures for exposed pipes or small leaks to become a major problem.
Don't wait for ice to ravage your home's plumbing! Take these simple precautions and save yourself the hassle of dealing with significant foundation damage or other issues once spring comes around.
Keep Track Of Water Use
Identify possible issues by starting where it hurts you the most; your wallet. If you keep a close eye on your water bill each month, you'll be sure to notice if there's a sudden surge in the amount of water your property uses.
Unless you recently installed a pool or other major water feature, chances are the large uptick in your latest bill results from a leak in your line. Even a small drip can cost you several gallons over the course of a day!
Pick Out Possible Leak Locations
Once you've poured over your water bill, it's time to focus that same attention on your home. If you know where your plumbing lies, then congratulations, you've already won half the battle. Focus your attention on areas that appear to have water damage despite not being anywhere near a plumbing fixture.
Do you see any black or green fuzzy gunk in the areas that appear wet? Don't touch it! In fact, go put on a mask before you proceed any further because you're likely dealing with mold. Molds can produce mycotoxins that sometimes serve as deadly neurotoxins! It's best you don't disturb them, but make a note of every location with mold or a wet spot.
If you can't seem to locate the source fo your leak, go ahead and call a local plumber. They should be able to help you pinpoint the exact location of your leaks in no time.
Watch Out For Leaks In Your Outdoor Plumbing
If there doesn't seem to be any leaks indoors, you might want to try checking all of your outdoor faucets. It's easy to miss small changes in every single one of your outdoor faucets unless you use them regularly, but they're a common source of water leaks.
The valves that stop water from flowing often fill with sediment, don't seat right, and then allow water to pass through unintentionally. Otherwise, previous frosts might have already affected your outdoor plumbing and unseated the components inside of a hose bib, thereby causing it to leak.
Whatever the case, inspect any plumbing fixtures you may have outdoors and consider replacing valves or insulating the most vulnerable fixtures.
Don't Allow Sediment To Settle In Your Water Heater
With temperatures dropping, you're sure to make more use of your home's hot water system than usual. All of this extra use will put your water heater under increased stress and cause more sediment to settle in the tank. That's why it's essential to flush your heater of any existing residue before the start of winter. Otherwise, that residue will all be unleashed later in the year and cause pressure buildup that can lead to leaks and more.
Hire A Plumber To Check Issues You've Noticed
If you know you have a plumbing issue that you've been putting off, now is the time to take care of it. Cold weather only worsens plumbing issues, and water that has seeped into your home is likely to compromise the structure's integrity. To put it simply, plan to take care of issues early or pay for major repairs later.
Finding A Reliable Plumber Is Key
We get that no one wants to call a plumber. It's difficult choosing one, and paying for good work can be expensive. However, calling a plumber is far less costly than paying for the repairs that come after a water line has burst and damaged the foundation of a building. In fact, most calls and consultations with good plumbers are completely free!
Our advice to you is to find a good plumber, like Easy Flow Drain And Sewer, and hold onto them. Not only will they save you money on repairs, but they'll also make sure you're always well taken care of. With a reliable plumber like Easy Flow Drain And Sewer on your side, you'll never have to worry about your plumbing again, as you'll always know who to turn to for trenchless relining pipe repairs and other services.
For another reliable plumber, we recommend the services of Domco Plumbing in Northern California. Domco dedicates an entire portion of their business to dealing with Sacramento frozen pipes as well as the frozen pipes in the area at large. If anyone can help you with your frozen line issues, they can!