Things Are Beginning To Thaw: 4 Steps To Take To Get Your Plumbing Ready For Spring

Now that the snow is starting to melt, it's time to start preparing your home for spring. One of the first things you should do is get your plumbing taken care of. This is particularly important if you've experienced freezing temperatures, or heavy flooding during the winter. Here are four simple steps you can take to make sure your plumbing is ready to handle the spring thaw.

Clear the Clean Out Drains

If you don't pay much attention to your clean out drains, you should. You might not realize this, but those clean out drains are your first line of defense against stubborn clogs, and sewage backups. During the winter, the freezing temperatures can cause waste products to freeze inside the drains. Once spring arrives, the waste thaws out, but it doesn't necessarily leave the drain pipes. To make sure you're not left with a serious mess, you should have a plumber come out and give your clean out drains a thorough cleaning, preferably with a hydrojet. The hydrojet will cut right through the waste and flush it through to the sewers.

Tighten All the Pipe Fittings

When water freezes in the pipes, it expands, which puts pressure on the drains, especially the fittings. If you've had a few freeze/thaw cycles this winter, your pipe fittings might not be as secure as they should be. In fact, the constant freezing and thawing could have actually loosened them, which could lead to some leaks and floods this spring. Now that things are thawing out, go around the house and tighten all the pipe fittings, including the ones that are under you sinks. Don't forget the hose fittings on your washing machine either.

Give Yourself the Gift of Hot Water

If your water heater is more than a decade old, now's a good time to think about a replacement. Water heaters can last a long time. However, after about a decade, they start wearing out. If you wait too long for a replacement, you could end up without hot water, or worse. You could end up with a ruptured water heater, which means you'll be paying for a replacement water heater, as well as the flood cleanup. Give yourself the gift of hot water by replacing your water heater before spring arrives.

Test Your Water Control Valves

When you're getting your plumbing ready for spring, don't forget to test the water control valves. Those are the valves that control water flow to your toilets and your sinks. The last thing you want is to find out your water control valves are stuck when you're facing a flood. Simply shut each of the valves off, and then turn them back on again. If they're stuck, you'll need to contact your plumber.