Homeowners and landlords alike know quite well how expensive and time-consuming the upkeep of their property can be. Plumbing is one element present in all homes that can, sometimes, turn into a headache — especially during winter. However, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Learning about the most common plumbing issues you can face during wintertime and knowing what to do to prevent them is a great first step toward protecting your property and your investments. 

Keep in mind that during the colder seasons, plumbing systems may pop due to the change in weather. This leads to the first most common winter plumbing problem you can experience.

Frozen Pipe Leaks

Freezing temperatures can expose pipes located along exterior walls or in uninsulated areas to major risks. If frozen, these pipes can crack and experience bursts, increasing the risk of water leaks that, over time, can become seriously damaging. 

One of the first things a homeowner may notice when a water pipe freezes and cracks are that the water flow from a sink or a shower will suddenly become very light. Oftentimes, there will be no water flow at all. 

In order to prevent a future headache, you might want to consider hiring a plumbing professional  like Paul Henderson Plumbing to ensure your water supply lines are properly insulated. You might also want to learn more about pressure relief valves, which could help to lower pressure buildup, especially during the colder months. 

Clogged Drains

After the holiday festivities, kitchen drains are the first to experience issues. That’s because the increased food waste being dumped down garbage disposals might not be properly processed, increasing the risk of clogged kitchen drains. 

If you have experienced issues with your garbage disposals during winter, this might be why. 

To prevent clogs and keep your kitchen sinks working perfectly throughout winter, never pour grease, coffee grounds, oil, or meat bones down the drain. Most importantly, alert everyone in your household to follow these instructions. 

To keep the disposal running well, remember to run ice through the unit every now and then. And remember, cover the drain with the stopper before turning on the disposal. 

Frozen Sump Pump or Backed Up Lines

When the temperature begins to drop and the snow begins to pile up, homeowners tend to use their sump pumps more often, especially between snowfalls, as the ice begins to melt. During these colder periods, it is common to experience a sump pump system freeze. If this occurs, the backup can end up causing you greater troubles such as floods. 

The best way to prevent issues with your sump pump is to keep them well serviced during fall. 

Clean the sump pump lines to remove any sitting debris or grime, and make sure there is heat going into the basement so the sump pump doesn’t freeze.

Furthermore, you may contact a plumbing team to help you redirect water waste away from the home’s foundation so the load on your sump pump is reduced.

Basement Floods

After a snow pileup, warmer weather causes the accumulated snow to melt. Depending on how your basement is designed, and whether you have properly waterproofed it or not, the basement may end up flooding. 

In central Indiana, we all know how easily that can happen. But what should you do to improve the house’s foundation and drainage so that the melting snow doesn’t flood your basement?

One of the most important steps you should take is to inspect your foundation walls for cracks and water leaks before winter. If necessary, patch them up. You can also help to prevent snow buildup by clearing snow from the area surrounding the house’s foundation as soon as snowfall occurs. 

Water Line Leaks

If you live in an old house or simply in a house that hasn’t had its older plumbing checked by a professional in a while, your water line could be at risk of experiencing breaks and leaks. 

As the temperature drops and stays below freezing for some time, older plumbing can experience splits. Over a short period of time, holes will develop, increasing the risk of a major water leak. 

Before winter is over, you might want to have a plumbing expert inspect your water lines. Making necessary repairs before the damage is done will pay off in the end.

Got a plumbing problem?  Don’t hesitate to reach us here or call us at 317-872-3535 if you have a burst or frozen pipe; sump pump, water heater, water softener issue, or a plumbing emergency!