If you’re like most homeowners, you realize winter can be a stressful time for your home’s pipes. The only problem is you don’t know how to make sure they’re safe during the coldest months of the year.

Have no fear! JDP is here to guide you through our Winter Plumbing Maintenance Checklist. Grab a pen or pencil and get ready to start checking items off and taking back control of your home!

1. Baby Those Pipes!

Like a singer needs to baby his or her vocal cords prior to a big performance, you should baby your pipes as they hunker down for winter.

Did you know that both interior and exterior pipes can freeze? Most people don’t.

Exterior piping, like outdoor spigots and pipes in exterior walls are the most likely pipes to freeze in frigid weather. One of the best ways to prevent damage to your exterior pipes is winterizing your hose bibs. Start by turning off the water valve that serves your outdoor spigot(s) and draining any leftover water. Then insulate your spigot in a faucet jacket, a Styrofoam box that keeps your faucet from getting too cold (these are available at any hardware store). It’s also never a bad idea to wrap exposed exterior pipes in foam insultation (think pool floatie or something like it).

Prevent indoor pipes from freezing by maintaining a steady, comfortable temperature (between 60-68 degrees) in your home at all times and leaving cabinet doors open with the faucet dripping slowly overnight.

If you see extremely light waterflow from your sinks and showers or no waterflow at all, you’ll know you have frozen pipes… If you see this, call us immediately! Burst pipes can wreak havoc on your home.

In the event of a burst pipe, locate your main water valve and turn it off! This will minimize the damage to your home.

2. Put Your Gardening Tools Away

If you’re like most homeowners, you might think, “What’s the big deal about leaving a hose or sprinkler attached to the spigot? I haven’t used it in weeks.” Or you might not see the hidden value in blowing out your underground sprinkler system. Both shortcuts can have major impacts on your budget and your home.

If your hose or sprinkler system has any water left in it and that water freezes, the frozen water will expand, increasing pressure on your plumbing system until – ultimately – a pipe bursts! Burst pipes are some of our most costly and inconvenient repairs. It’s always better to put the effort in upfront than to play roulette with your plumbing.

3. Make Sure Your Sump Pump is Sparkling Clean

Before it gets chilly, check the state of your sump pump. Make sure that any grime, grit, or debris are removed so that melted snow can run through it easily. This will prevent your pump system from backing up and flooding your basement.

4. Check For Drafts

Got cold spots by windows and doors? That’s a tip off that your weather sealing is in need of repair or replacement. Like we said, maintaining a consistent temperature for your pipes is important, and that’s very hard to do with freezing cold air blowing into your home. This won’t necessarily harm your plumbing system, but it will empty your wallet due to increased energy costs and keep you from being as comfortable as possible while cozying up on the couch.

5. Consider a House Call

Guessing and ignoring things don’t work out well when it comes to plumbing. When in doubt, call us out!

If you’re not sure how to complete these checklist items or you’re physically unable to do so, consider scheduling a whole-home check-up for your plumbing system before the wintry weather hits. Our team of skilled, experienced technicians is happy to check all these items off your to-do list.

Schedule your consultation!

Has disaster already struck? Call us immediately! We’re here for you around the clock, any day of the year with NO overtime, after-hours, or weekend fees.