Fall Plumbing Maintenance Checklist
There’s so much to love about fall in Culpeper. At Culpeper Home Services, we’re especially fond of the crisp air and colorful trees. Of course, as refreshing and beautiful as those things are, they can create headaches for homeowners—expensive ones.
Use our Fall Plumbing Maintenance Checklist to make sure your home’s ready for those falling temps and falling leaves.
- Clean out your drains and gutters. Inside your gutters and drains, those stunning red, yellow, and orange leaves quickly turn into brown sludge. And when that builds up over time, it creates a dam—preventing water from going down and away from your home. All of that debris can also affect your sewer lines, and a swampy, stinky home isn’t the best environment for your annual Thanksgiving gathering.
- Inspect your water heater and water heater pressure relief valve. Water heaters should be inspected and cleaned at least annually, but they rarely get the preventive care they require. If you want to avoid a cold shower the morning of the first hard freeze, it’s a good idea to check this chore off your list. Head to your water heater manufacturer’s website for specific instructions, or give us a call at (540) 845-3653.
- Check for leaks and drips. Temperatures will stay above freezing for a few weeks yet, which makes this the perfect time to check for drips and leaks. If you wait until it gets really cold, you may find a leak the hard way—through a plumbing disaster caused by a burst pipe. How so? When water freezes, it expands and pushes against the inside of your plumbing pipes. If there’s any vulnerability, the pipe will shatter or split.
- Insulate exposed pipes. If you have plumbing pipes and fixtures in unheated areas of your home, such as your garage, basement, or crawlspace, it’s wise to insulate them. Home improvement stores carry affordable insulation kits.
- Store your garden hoses. One of our favorite perks of fall is getting a break from lawn maintenance. Just be sure your mowing season wrap-up includes wrapping up your garden hoses. Disconnect each hose and drain it to protect it from bursting over the winter.
- Turn off your outdoor faucets. Outdoor faucets, or hose bibbs, can create serious plumbing problems in colder temps if you don’t prepare them properly. Turn off the inside water supply line, and then open the hose bibbs to allow excess water to drain out. If your home doesn’t have frost-free hose bibbs, consider swapping them out before winter hits or insulating them.
- Use your water shut off valve if you’ll be traveling. If you plan to be away for a few days, go ahead and turn off your water. Then, drain the pipes by turning on faucets in your basement and on the top floor of your home. These are good precautions to take any time you’re traveling, but they’re especially important during colder weather.
We know you want to take good care of your home, but sometimes even preventive maintenance can feel a little intimidating—which means it doesn’t always get done. We get it! For years, Culpeper Home Services has helped Culpeper-area homeowners protect their investment. Give us a call to schedule an appointment, and one of our friendly, professional technicians will be happy to help you experience peace of mind about your plumbing.