The season has come to an end here on the Outer Banks, and for those of you with vacation homes and investment properties, now is the time to think about preparing your vacant home for the winter months.
Do I really need to winterize my home?
There is a strong misconception among home owners that winterizing your home’s water pipes when you leave your home vacant is unnecessary and a waste of time. While the winterizing process might seem like extra time and money, in reality it isn’t that difficult or expensive, and the results could save you thousands of dollars in wasted water or repairs. The repair of frozen, busted pipes are certainly more work and expense than a winterizing appointment.
Copper pipes are notoriously the worst, but all pipes can freeze and burst. Frozen pipes can swell up and then burst; or after they thaw out, leaks can develop. Since the pipes are not flexible enough for all the expansion that takes place, the frozen water will end up causing the pipes to crack, leaving you with big springtime bills to get the plumbing replaced or repairing water damage in your home.
Let Action Plumbing take the worry out of winterizing! We make it easy. Here’s a snapshot of the process:
Turn the Water Off
- The first step for us is to locate the main water shut off valve to your home and turn off all running water.
Drain the Water Heater
- Next stop is the water heater. Once you have the water to the house shut off, we will turn off the water heater and drain the tank.
Drain the Supply Lines
- Now it’s time to get all the water out, we will drain all the supply lines, and open all faucets and fixtures and blow out the supply lines. This is a process that requires an air compressor to push out any left behind water within the pipes.
Drain All Appliances
- Anything in your home that stores water needs to be turned off and drained of all water.
- Once all the water has been removed, we will go a step further to winterize toilets and other drains with a special antifreeze solution. The antifreeze is usually pink and will go an extra step into making sure none of your home’s plumbing lines will freeze.
- We also will turn off the main circuit breaker unless owner requests heat to be left on.
- We will winterize the plumbing on the outside of your house, since these are often the source of frozen pipes due to outdoor showers and foot-washing stations. If you have a separate shut-off for external faucets, our technician will turn that off as well. We will then drain the outdoor faucets, which will release the pressure in your pipes and prevent problems during the winter.
For more information about winterization or to set up an appointment to have your home winterized, please contact us today!
Note: Prices include all trip fees, winterizations are not guaranteed. Some damage may be unavoidable in certain circumstances, i.e. extreme weather, faulty cut-off valves/meters.