How to Winterize Your House Plumbing

As the temperature drops, you may notice that your plumbing is under more strain. Frozen pipes, burst hoses, and leaking faucets are common winter plumbing problems that can cause severe damage to your home. 

For that reason, winterizing your house plumbing before the first snowfall is essential. With the right supplies and techniques, you can protect your pipes, faucets, and water heater from freezing temperatures and costly repairs.

Winterizing Your House Plumbing: Where to Start?

Without taking the steps to winterize your house plumbing, you’ll increase the likelihood of spending a significant amount of money on plumbing repairs. If you feel overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, we’ve got you covered.

The first step to winterizing your house plumbing is gathering the necessary supplies, including insulation material, heat tape, and a caulking gun. Insulating exposed pipes is crucial in preventing freezing and burst pipes.

Drain Outdoor Faucets and Hoses

Draining outdoor faucets and hoses is another essential step in winterizing your house’s plumbing. Have you ever left a water bottle in the freezer? If you have, you know that the frozen water slowly expands as it freezes and can warp the shape of the water bottle. 

The same is true for water left in hoses—except rather than just warped shapes, you can end up with some burst pipes and hoses. To avoid this, turn off the water supply to outdoor faucets and let the remaining water drain out. The risk of frozen faucets and hoses can also be reduced by wrapping them in insulation sleeves, heat tape, or by placing foam covers over the hose bib. 

How to Avoid Leaks

Leaks and cracks can also cause severe plumbing problems during winter. These can be caused by pipes that are not adequately sealed or areas where there is a temperature difference. If you want to avoid leaks altogether, you can use a caulking gun to seal cracks and gaps in walls.

3 Tips To Winterize Your Water Heater

Truly winterizing your house plumbing includes protecting your water heater. Here are three tips for maintaining your water heater during winter:

1. Check for Leaks:

Make sure to inspect your water heater for any potential leaks. This can help you identify issues before they become a bigger problem.

2. Add Insulation:

Wrap the hot water tank with insulation specially designed for that purpose. This is an inexpensive solution that can significantly improve heat retention and energy efficiency during winter.

3. Drain Water:

Draining a few gallons of water from the tank several times a year can help flush out sediment and rust buildup. This is especially important if you live in an area with hard water.

Can Dripping Faucets Prevent Freezing?

Dripping faucets are a kind of faucet that is designed to keep water from freezing in cold weather. While this can be a good way to prevent frozen pipes, it isn’t always necessary—especially if you follow the other steps for winterizing your house plumbing.

In any case, these faucets require more maintenance than regular ones and may increase your water bills. It’s also important to note that dripping faucets won’t prevent all types of freezing—only those in areas with extremely cold temperatures. 

If you notice freezing pipes, it’s best to seek professional help and get their advice.

Be Ready For Winter With Bell Cow

At Bell Cow, we understand how important it is to be ready for winter. If you need help winterizing your house plumbing, we have the skills to help you protect your home against freezing temperatures and costly repairs. With over 50 years of combined experience battling the cold, you can rest assured that your home will be in good hands this winter. 

Contact us today and get ready for the winter season!