Fall is a great time to do a bit of plumbing maintenance in preparation for the colder months ahead. Pipes and plumbing equipment should be inspected at least once a year to check that everything is in good working order. It makes sense to do this now, to minimize the risk of burst, frozen pipes and faulty water heaters before the snow hits. Some maintenance is easy to do yourself, while in other cases you may want to call in a Chicago IL plumber such as Almighty Plumbing to get the job done properly.
Clear the gutters and drains
When clearing up fall leaves, don’t sweep them into the drains. Be consistent about keeping the drains and gutters clear of leaves. Damp, decomposing leaves can cause a blockage, leading to a nasty burst pipe come the winter freeze.
Start fixing any leaks now
Leaky plumbing is the number one cause of burst pipes during winter. If you’ve been putting off fixing any leaks, bring in a Chicago plumbing company to inspect all the pipes on your property and repair any damage before winter.
Do a water heater inspection
Your water heater should be inspected once a year to check for damage and to clean it. Over time, minerals in the water cause the build-up of sediment which reduces its efficiency, and the last thing you need is a lack of hot water when the weather turns really cold! Contact a plumber to drain and clear your water heater of any sediment. Water heaters are also prone to rust, and if yours is rusting your plumber may recommend replacing it.
Maintain your sump pump
Just like your pipes, your sump pump can freeze during cold weather, causing major damage during a thaw if it is not working properly. Check the sump pump by lifting the lid and clearing out any clogging, and pour water through it to make sure that it is draining properly.
Insulate against the cold
All pipes are at risk of freezing and bursting during winter, but those in unheated areas of your home are especially so. Purchase heat tape or an insulation kit from the hardware and insulate these pipes. If you’re not confident with DIY work, bring in a plumber to do the work.