When the cold season comes knocking, homeowners need to be prepared. Plumbing systems are among the parts of the property that should be ready for winter. As the temperatures drop to as low as the freezing point, the last thing you want is to get into the shower and no water comes out. During winter, different outdoor valves should also be winterized to prevent damage. It is part of proper maintenance to ensure comfort and convenience during and before the cold season.
While many may not know this, indoor valves could also be affected by the extremely low temperatures of winter. With this having been said, here are some valves to make sure you check as the cold season approaches.
1. Sprinkler System Valves
If you have a beautiful lawn in your home, higher chances are that you use a water sprinkler system to keep it green and healthy. However, the cold season could easily spell doom to your once beautiful garden. After choosing the right sprinkler system, it is crucial to know how to protect it from winter damage. The common victims for this include the piping and the valves, among other parts. Therefore, sprinkler valves and pipe fittings are among the things you want to keep a close eye on as winter approaches. You may also want to drain your faucets, turn off the water, and give your sprinkler system a blowout.
2. Shower Valves
During winter, the frigid climate causes freezing, which can cause problems in drainage. That is why we are advised to remove shower accessories like hand sprays, foot showers, fountain bubblers, and hose bibs, among others. They are at their best during other seasons but not winter. You can also consider the following:
- A shut-off valve will assist in draining your entire system before winter
- Turn on all valves of the accessories to allow them to drain completely
- Use compressed air to blow moisture dry
3. Under The Sink Valve
These are valves that are found under the sink, designed to stop the flow of water from your well. They are typically shut-valves, but with different mechanisms. In fact, they cause less flow restriction.
4. Water Heater Valve
Everyone loves comfort, and especially during the cold season. The house needs a water heating system, which allows residents to use warm or hot water to shower, clean, and wash. It is nothing new today, but there are precautions to ensure they are still functional when winter knocks.
5. Main Water Pipe Valve
This is the valve that allows water to flow into and throughout the home. That said, it simply means that this valve is used to shut off the flow of water rather than regulating it. With that explanation, when this valve is turned off, the entire house will not have water flowing through the various channels.
Winterizing Valves and Water Systems
The above and many more valves can be winterized by following the below steps:
- Turn off the main water valve, the water pump, and the heater. That will protect the heating elements from spoiling when there is no water in the tank.
- Valves and taps should remain open throughout winter to allow draining of all the valves and taps.
- Use air compressors to blow out excess water.
- Check all the sinks and tubs with drain traps and add antifreeze to them to avoid them from freezing. Remove all the water that is in the storage tanks to avoid freezing. Freezing often leads to the cracking of the toilet basins and other home pieces of equipment that hold water.
If you get the time to check your home’s condition before winter, the better it will be. If not, winterizing your home may require a professional plumber, alongside other technicians. They will help sort out all your winter worries if you feel stuck on what to do and how to do it.
More Winterization Tips
You can also prevent the pipes from freezing by first looking at pipes installed in unheated spaces. The following are some ways that could assist in preventing them from freezing:
- Maintain a heating source inside the building to provide room temperature for the pipes
- Maintain a faucet dripping. It allows water to flow freely which prevents it from freezing
- Insulate pipes with insulation sleeves
- Inspect the exterior and make sure all the crawl space is well insulated
- Use a heat tape to protect pipes from freezing
It is important not to miss a step while planning to undertake this process. This helps prevent inter damage on your plumbing channels, systems, and equipment. If you do not feel confident enough to invade this profession, your plumber is always a call away.