Avoid Costly Pipe Leaks by Preparing Your Plumbing for Winter

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With frigid winter temperatures come pipe leaks, especially here in Utah where the freeze and thaw cycles can wreak havoc.

pipe leaks

Unless you – and your plumbing – are well prepared, you could end up with costly leaks and nightmarish amounts of damage to your home. Fortunately, preparing your pipes for the winter is a quick and easy process.

Fix Plumbing and Pipe Leaks Before the Winter Hits

Do you have a dripping pipe under the kitchen sink, or maybe a small plumbing leak in the utility room? Diligently check all of your faucets, connections and exposed pipes, inside and out. If you see any signs of pipe leaks or unexplained moisture or water damage, contact our office ASAP to schedule these repairs.

The tiniest pipe leak can turn into a much bigger problem once the water freezes inside. Cracks can become more significant, and the damage can spread to the surrounding pipes. By repairing plumbing leaks before winter temperatures arrive, you can save your pipes – and your budget – from more expensive repairs later on.

Add Plumbing Insulation to Prevent Frozen Pipes & Leaks

Any time the ambient outdoor temperature drops to 32 degrees or below, the water in your pipes can freeze. Water expands when it freezes and the resulting pressure can cause pipes to burst. If that happens, hundreds of gallons of water could come pouring out, ruining your flooring, furniture and drywall, and potentially even damaging the structural elements of your home.

Protect your plumbing by wrapping all exposed pipes with insulation. Pipe wraps, long foam tubes with a slit on one side, are available at most Provo area hardware and home improvement stores. Cut the tubes to the length you need, then simply wrap the plumbing insulation around the pipes. Finally, secure the foam in place with duct tape.

If you already have pipe insulation in place, inspect and replace it, if necessary, before the temperatures drop below freezing. The foam degrades over time and flakes away, potentially leaving parts of your pipes exposed.

Take Care of Your Outside Hoses and Valves

Don’t forget about your outdoor plumbing! It also must be prepared for the cold Utah winter weather. Start by removing and draining your garden hoses, then storing them in a warm, dry space. If water freezes inside one of your hoses, it can become brittle and spring leaks.

Your hose bibs and outdoor faucets must also be drained and protected. If your home has a dedicated shut-off valve for outdoor plumbing systems, turn it off and then drain any remaining water in the line. If your home does not have a shut-off valve, be sure to insulate the hose bibs and faucets with foam covers.

Do you have a lawn sprinkler system? Those pipes can freeze and burst, too. In fact, because they are typically constructed of PVC piping, they are more prone to freezing damage than metal pipes. Prevent these potential pipe leaks by turning off the water to the system and then flushing out any remaining water by turning on each sprinkler valve.

Here at American Plumbing Services, we love our customers. However, we never want to see you under emergency circumstances. That’s why we offer our services to help you prepare your plumbing systems for the winter season. Although we are based in Provo, Utah, we provide service to homes and businesses throughout the Salt Lake City area and northern Utah. Contact us today and let us help you avoid costly plumbing and pipe leaks this winter.