Prep Your Pipes for Winter
Being a homeowner comes with a bevy of responsibilities, particularly during seasonal transitions. One of those is protecting your pipes from the cold Canadian winters once the temperature drops. If this is your first year winterizing your casa, or if you just need a bit of a refresher, keep reading for our tips on preparing your pipes for the upcoming season.
What happens if my pipes freeze?
When water freezes, it expands. That’s bad news for any of your exposed pipes that have left over water in them. If your pipes are exposed to sub-zero temperatures and aren’t properly cared for, the water sitting inside is likely to freeze and cause cracks in their material.
Are there certain types of pipes that are more prone to freezing?
Any pipes that have more direct exposure to the outside are most likely to experience freezing. Think garden hose pipes and swimming pool supply lines. You’ll also need to be wary of pipes located in unheated areas of your house, like the crawlspace, basement, garage, or even cabinets and closets. Pay attention to pipes that run along exterior walls without insulation as well.
What steps can I take to protect my pipes in the winter?
While you still have the warmer temperatures, be sure to implement whichever of these points are relevant to your space:
- Properly drain your water sprinkler and swimming pool supply lines and turn these lines off
- Consider adding insulation to any spots that are lacking, like your crawl space, attic or garage
- Don’t forget to insulate both hot and cold-water pipes that lead to your kitchen and bathrooms
- Ensure your garage door stays closed in the winter months if it contains any exposed pipes
- Pick up and install products like pipe sleeves on pipes exposed to cold temperatures
- Maintain a consistent thermostat temperature during the days and nights. It may add a bit of extra cost to your hydro bill, but it’s cheaper and much less of a headache than replacing your pipes due to freezing damage!
- Always leave your heat on low, not off, when you go away for an extended period if you have exposed pipes in your house
- Let cold water lightly drip from faucets of outdoor pipes to prevent freezing
- Keeps closets and cabinet doors open if they have exposed pipes inside
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