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Plumbing maintenance 101: How to prepare your plumbing system for fall
12 Sep

Plumbing Maintenance 101: How to Prepare Your Plumbing System for Fall

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It happens every year: summer comes to a close, the temperature cools, and fall arrives soon after. Now is the time to start thinking about how to prepare your plumbing system for the months ahead. By taking some simple steps today, you will be able to protect your plumbing and reduce the need for future maintenance.

In this article, we will help you understand why and how you need to prepare your plumbing for the fall season.

Why do you need to prepare for fall?

You will not be surprised to hear that in Toronto, fall and winter can be exceptionally harsh on your plumbing. When temperatures drop and the rain and snow come, these changes can put enormous strain on your pipes, heaters, and outdoor water systems. 

Problems can include frozen or broken pipes, which are not only inconvenient and messy, but can also be very expensive to fix. By tackling some simple preventative maintenance now, you can save yourself a lot of headaches and money later.

It also isn’t a bad idea to consider a Toronto plumber like Advanced Plumbing to do an assessment and repairs on your plumbing system.

Insulate Your Pipes

When the temperature drops, your unprotected pipes can struggle; this is especially true for outdoor pipes. When the air or ground surrounding your pipes cools, it can, of course, cool the water within. The effects of this can range from inconvenient to disastrous.

At best, when the water within your pipes cools, it can make your tap water colder. At worst, when the water inside your pipes cools to the point of freezing, the frozen water expands. This will not only block your pipes but can actually make them burst.

A great DIY way to solve this issue is to buy adhesive pipe insulation at the hardware store. This is a simple fix that can be done in the afternoon. However, don’t forget that not all of your pipes will be easy to access. One trick is to leave your faucet running overnight, but this fix isn’t permanent due to the inevitably higher water bill and the constant sound of running water.

Clear Gutters and Drainpipes

When it comes to fall, leaves and debris tend to…fall. This is especially true if your home is surrounded by trees. Even if you don’t have trees right beside your home, though, your gutters can still be filled with debris.

Clogged gutters make it difficult or impossible for water to properly drain off of your roof. When water collects, it can rot fascia boards and seep into damage and weaken your walls, windows, and ceilings.

The fix for this problem can be very simple. All you need to do is remove debris that has been collected in the gutter. Still, just because it is simple, that doesn’t mean this task is easy, safe, or that anyone can do it. Most gutters can only be accessed by ladder. If you are unable to do this, or feel unsafe, it’s a good idea to consider hiring someone to do it for you.

Seal All Leaks

Small leaks may not seem like a big deal during the hot summer months when water quickly evaporates. You may not even be aware that you have these leaks in your plumbing system, especially because they can be hidden under floors or behind walls. When the weather starts to cool, however, water is more likely to collect and cause major problems.

These problems come from water seeping into your ceilings, walls, and even the foundation. With cooler temperatures, the wet wood of your home is prone to moulding. The constant flow of water over your foundation, however small, can cause erosion. This is worsened in the fall and winter months because when the freezing water in your foundation expands, it can cause cracks that damage the structural integrity of your home.

It can be difficult to find the hidden leaks yourself. At Advanced Plumbing, we offer camera drain inspections to find damaged areas in your pipes that would otherwise be impossible to access. It can be a good rule of thumb to call us if you see discolouration in your walls, floor, and ceiling that appears to come from moisture.

Disconnect the Hoses

An easy way to protect your outdoor plumbing is to disconnect all external hoses. You probably won’t be watering the garden much over the winter anyway! 

These hoses are prone to leaking, which, as we have already discussed, can wreak havoc on your home, especially during the colder months. If your home has an internal shut-off valve for your external water, you should turn it off during the colder months when it is not in use.

Because these areas are prone to leaking, you should have a plumber come by to assess and fix any leaks. As well, store your hose indoors during the winter months so that it can maintain its durability. Also, consider purchasing a styrofoam cover from your local hardware store that is designed to insulate your external faucets.

Check Your Water Heater

Staying warm during the cooler months is incredibly important. We all know the feeling of getting into a shower that will not get warm. This can be inconvenient or even disastrous during the fall and winter in Toronto. You need to make sure that your water heater is in tip-top condition so that you are able to stay warm all year round.

We can send you one of our trusted and expert repair technicians to assess your water heater for leaks, look for issues with water quality, locate debris that may have accumulated in the water, and even assess drops of water on the tank itself.

Call the Plumbing Experts

There is much to do to prepare your plumbing system for fall. It is important that you do preventative maintenance to avoid a future catastrophe that not only damages your home but is also very expensive to fix. 

Luckily, we are here to make this work easy for you. We would be glad to help you find and seal small leaks, examine your water heater, and look for any other potential plumbing problem.

For more information about getting your plumbing ready for fall, call Advanced Plumbing at 866-863-9539 or contact us here.


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