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By John Nelson
contributing writer 

Winter plumbing tips from John the Plumber

John the Plumber


October 15, 2022

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The weather is gorgeous right now and we may even have some warmer weeks in the forecast, but winter is on its way and that means freezing temps. In the plumbing world that means busted water lines. You can avoid all that by taking some simple but vital steps now.

For those of you who have an evaporative or "swamp" cooler start thinking about winterizing your cooler. This involves draining the reserve pan, shutting off the water source and covering the unit itself to keep cold air from coming through. Failure to drain and shut off the water supply can have devastating consequences. Freezing temps can cause the water line on the roof to rupture resulting in the equivalent of a hose running on your roof. For flat-topped houses, this almost always leads to a leak. At the very minimum you'll end up with a large water bill.

Going on vacation? The best plan is to turn off the water if your home has a shut-off valve. Barring that, be sure to keep the heat on. Too many people shut the heat off while they're gone and return to a flooded home from a pipe that froze and burst.

Pipes in garages and under raised foundation homes are especially vulnerable to freezing. Pipe warmers and insulation are not a guaranteed fix but they can help. Check your electric pipe wrap frequently to make sure it is still working.

You'll hear suggestions to leave water running slightly to avoid freezing. This is not suggested if you are on septic as it's only effective if you leave the last fixture in the line open. Most people don't have a plumbing schematic so they won't know which fixture that is, which means they need to leave every fixture running. Not a good idea when you're on septic and during drought in general.

The folks over at John the Plumber have seen it all and are available to help you assess your plumbing, and the potential for water line breaks and flooding. Give Kim or Chelsea a call at (661) 823-8031 to set up an appointment today. Call them before your pipes freeze, as there's nothing they can do once the pipes are frozen other than to wait for warmer temps.


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