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A burst pipe in the dead of winter can be a serious problem. It is important to learn how to take care of your pipes to prevent problems and expensive repairs. Here are some things you can do to take care of your home’s pipes.
Clean the Drains
Clearing the drains of blockages is important to keeping your plumbing system working correctly. Avoid dumping grease down the drain, as it will clog them. Drains in showers and bathtubs can have problems with clogging over the years if you have a lot of hair and soap buildup in the pipes. One way to help keep them clear is by flushing the drains out with hot water. If this doesn’t help, take ½ cup of baking soda and pour it down the drain. Follow this with 1-2 cups of vinegar and allow the mixture to clean the drains for 30 minutes. Rinse the drains with hot water to help remove excess hair. For heavier clogs, plan on using an enzyme-based drain cleaner.
Prevent Frozen Pipes
One of the worst situations you can encounter as a homeowner is a burst frozen pipe. To prevent your pipes from freezing and bursting, you need to disconnect all exterior hoses. Make sure you drain the exterior pipes. Shut the water off to all the systems that do not need water in the winter months. Once you have removed the hoses from their faucets, you then need to place a brass plug over each of the outlets.
When temperatures drop, make sure you open the interior faucets near the exterior walls. This will help to keep the exterior pipes from freezing, as you’ll have drops of water near these pipes. If you have a water heater or other plumbing fixtures in the garage, keep your garage door closed to prevent the cold air from reaching the plumbing lines. Insulate the pipes in the basement with the proper pipe insulation. This will help to prevent them from getting cold and freezing.
Water Heater Care
To maintain your water heater properly, insulate it during the winter months. This will prevent the water heater from excessively turning on and off. Another thing you can do to maintain your water heater is to drain out the sediment. Turn off the heater and open the drain line on the bottom. Once it drains, refill the tank half-way, and drain this water again. Once the water is drained out of the water heater a second time, you can then refill it all the way and turn it back on. If you find that this doesn’t help to improve your hot water problems, consult a professional.
If you are dealing with difficult plumbing repairs, call a professional. Professional plumbers can make proper repairs to your home’s plumbing system quickly, preventing issues you may have if you try to make the repairs on your own. Sometimes homeowners make a simple plumbing issue like a clogged drain much worse by trying to fix it. If you know you don’t have the right tools and skills to work on your home’s plumbing system, leave it to a professional plumber.
This article was written by Billy Dunham, a home improvement expert who hopes to help you have an even better home. He writes this on behalf of Bend IT Inc., your number one choice when looking for the best pipe bending service. Check out their website today and see how they can help you!
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