Fall Tips | Plumbing Fort Worth
With fall officially here, it is time to begin preparing your home’s plumbing in Fort Worth for freezing temperatures. While weather forecasts can change in an instant, the fall tips shared later in the blog can assist in assuring your home is prepared for any winter weather.
(image courtesy of Pixabay, https://pixabay.com/en/tap-hot-water-faucet-sink-plumbing-572432/)
If you are wondering about the possible conditions of winter this year, The Weather Channel’s climate models are indicating a below average temperature pattern for all of TX. After last winter, this is not welcome news considering six of seven days from Feb. 22-28 experienced at least a trace of freezing rain, freezing drizzle, snow, or sleet. Impacted by four winter storms, and experiencing 40 days at or below freezing caused its share of problems, including issues with numerous home’s plumbing in Fort Worth.
While snow and ice are hardly strangers to northern Texas, the typical 0.01 inches of frozen precipitation for the two days a year that is average for the Metroplex, was exceeded during February and March of this year. Four winter storms hit the region, with Thor dropping up to seven inches of snow in Grapevine on March 4-5.
Accidents covered the freeways, flights were canceled out of the DFW area, and schools were closed. Aside from the four storms, overall the remainder of winter was relatively mild.
This year, lower than average temperatures are anticipated, and could provide wintery precipitation for parts of Texas if weather related conditions all come together just right.
Of course, there may be variables in the weather that can change a forecast in minutes. On the eastern side of the state, the Gulf Stream often delivers the unexpected. The jet stream from the arctic has developed the habit of dropping into the south, lacking its once predictable pattern.
Ultimately, the homeowner’s best option is to be prepared for what may (or may not) come. From a plumbing perspective, this begins with protecting your home’s water pipes and other plumbing in Fort Worth from winters freezing temperatures.
Wrapping pipes now can help to prevent burst water pipes and repairs to your home’s plumbing in Fort Worth when temperatures drop below freezing.
- Insulate outdoor pipes and faucets, and water pipes located in unheated areas of your home. In addition, wrapped pipes save on energy costs by insulating hot water pipes. If your water heater is an older model lacing insulation, insulating it with a water heater blanket will save even more on energy costs.
The water heater has to work harder during the cold months of winter with the reduced temperature of incoming water. Turn the thermostat up if water is not hot enough. Flush the tank now to remove sediment buildup, which causes corrosion, shortens the water heater life span and reduces its efficiency. If you are uncomfortable providing this task, a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Fort Worth can provide this service for you.
- Seal openings, cracks, and crevices with expanding foam or caulking, especially those that are near water lines.
- During extreme cold periods, open the doors on the cabinets beneath sinks to allow warmer air to reach your plumbing in Fort Worth at night.
- Disconnect, drain, and store garden hoses before cold weather arrives. Insulate exposed pipe and faucets, and cover with waterproof material or a bucket. Outdoor insulated heat tapes are an option, though during power outages, your pipes will be unprotected.
- Have leaky outdoor faucets repaired before cold weather arrives. Even a small leak can lead to burst pipes. Furthermore, soaked insulation offers pipes no protection from freezing temperatures. Contact a plumber to repair outdoor plumbing in Fort Worth today, before cold weather arrives.
- Shut-off the water supply to automatic sprinkler systems.
- Clean the gutters and downspouts of any leaves, bird nests or other debris to ensure drainage, and prevent water flowing back beneath the roof, or pooling at the home’s foundation and causing flooding in the basement.
- Have a professional chimney sweep to inspect and professionally clean chimneys to ensure their safe operation.
- Have a professional inspect and clean all gas ventilation pipes for bird’s nests, and other accumulated debris. A blocked gas ventilation pipe is an immediate danger to you and your family from deadly carbon monoxide gas that will be unable to escape.
Gas furnaces and a gas water heater are examples of appliances that have a gas ventilation pipe. All homes should have at least one carbon monoxide detector on each floor, and ideally in all sleeping areas.
Inspect and clean the sump pump, its pit and test for proper operation by pouring a bucket of water into the pit to trigger operation. Pumps exposed to extreme cold can freeze, causing potential damage. If the sump pump has not already received service this year, contact a Benjamin Franklin plumber in Fort Worth.
- Have leaks repaired to prevent frozen plumbing in Fort Worth, burst pipes, and potentially severe damage to your home and its foundation.
Benjamin Franklin Plumbing in Fort Worth provides reliable, licensed plumbers for a wide range of plumbing services to maintain your plumbing in Fort Worth in top condition. We hire the best plumbers available, and back our services with our exclusive 100% satisfaction guarantee. As you read the fall tips provided, and recognize that you need plumbing repair, give us a call to schedule prompt service. We serve Fort Worth, Arlington, and the surrounding areas with quality plumbing services. Benjamin Franklin Plumbing is a member of the BBB with an A+ rating.