A plumbing problem is always inconvenient, but especially so during the winter when cold weather impedes repairs. The best thing you can do in this situation is to avoid the problem in the first place. Here are three common winter plumbing problems, and how you can prevent or fix any issues.
Winter Plumbing Problems to Watch For
1. Grease in Pipes
If you pour hot cooking grease down the drain, it will eventually cool and cling to nearby surfaces, potentially filling your pipes and creating a uniquely stubborn blockage. You should never pour grease down the drain — but if you do and it gets stuck, you may be able to push through the clog with hot water and a plunger.
2. Water Heater Failure
If you have guests over for the holidays, you may end up straining your water heater. If your hot water fails, you’ll likely need to call a plumber or heating technician to fix it. But first, check for problems you can solve yourself, like a blown-out pilot light or a problem with the temperature controls.
3. Frozen Pipes
In cold weather, any water left standing in an exposed pipe can potentially freeze. Not only does this cut off the water flow, but in many cases the expanding ice cracks the pipe. If this happens to you, shut off the water supply to the affected area and call a plumber immediately. You’ll need professional help thawing frozen areas or replacing broken pipes. Your plumber can also help you install insulation to prevent pipes from freezing again.
If you’re hit by a winter plumbing emergency, there’s a lot you can do to solve the problem yourself. If all else fails, call an emergency plumber. Do It Right Plumbing Sewer & Drain Services serves the Minneapolis, MN, area with fast, skillful help. Call on them for basic installation or for emergency repairs at your home or business. You can reach them at (612) 388-8524 to schedule an appointment, or visit them online for more information on their services.