Winter will soon be upon us, so we thought that we would provide some plumbing tips for winter, and summarize some of the articles recently published on the subject of plumbing issues which will soon become important as temperatures plummet.
The first of these plumbing tips for winter, is that of protecting your home plumbing and heating systems for frost and cold damage.
“Freezing can occur in any water pipe exposed to temperatures of 32 °F or below. As freezing water expands, it generates enough pressure to burst pipes and fixtures. When frozen pipes thaw, flooding can occur and cause extensive damage. Pipes in garages, attics, crawl spaces, and unheated rooms are particularly susceptible to freezing. Pipes in exterior walls may also freeze with temperatures below freezing during severely cold weather. “
What to Know About Winterizing Your Home Before Cold Weather Hits
- Know Where Your Shut-Off Valve Is: All responsible household members should know where the home’s shut-off valve is located prior to needing it for an emergency. Every home should be equipped with a shut-off valve called a “stop and drain valve”. Generally, a stop and drain valve is located on the service line on your side of the water meter, near the house (see plumbing diagram below). Mark your stop and drain valve with a tall stake so it can be easily identified under heavy snow. The KV valve, inside the meter box, is not for winterization use.
- Get a Stop and Drain Valve Key: When winterizing your home, using pliers or a wrench can cause damage to your stop and drain valve. Specially designed stop and drain valve keys are available at local hardware stores. Make sure you keep the key in an easy to reach location, but never leave it at the valve.
- Insulate Pipes and [Taps]: If you have pipes in unheated areas, such as the garage or a crawl space under the house, insulate them with items such as pipe wrap, foam jackets, or heat tape. Insulating products are available at local hardware stores or building supply retailers. Follow all manufacturers’ installation and operation instructions. If you have questions, call a professional for help.
- Seal Off Air Leaks: With cold winter winds, a tiny opening can let in enough cold air to freeze a pipe. Look for leaks around dryer vents, electrical wiring, and pipes. Use caulk or insulation to keep the cold air out. Don’t cover or block air vents for your water heater or furnace; proper ventilation is important for those items. via Atlanta Plumbing | Plumbing Tip | Winterization Info/Checklist
Next, of our plumbing tips for winter, is on the subject of plumbing and heating thermostat settings, which can make a big difference to the cost of winter heating:
A War of the Thermostat! Top of all our Plumbing Tips for Winter!
A plumbing thermostat equipment supplier [Drayton] says there is a … “war of the thermostat between men and women, as research from Money Supermarket shows that almost a third of UK adults admit to arguing with partners and housemates over temperature tampering.
According to the study, a quarter of UK adults adjust the heating without telling anyone else in the house, and it is mostly women that admit to fiddling with the thermostat. The study also found that 44% of those who have argued said it was because they were worried about the cost of putting the heating on.
Simon May, product manager at Drayton Controls, said: Historically we have seen a battle of the sexes when it comes to control over the thermostat. Women often prefer to have a warmer environment, whereas men are comfortable with a cooler temperature.
The rise in popularity of smart controls such as Draytons miGenie means its even easier for the temperature to be altered, as internet-connected devices allow the user to remotely control home heating using an app on a smartphone or tablet.
He said that adding a full set of heating controls to a conventional heating system can reduce energy costs by over 50%, according to BEAMA, and new internet connected devices can take this even further with the enhanced control they offer.
Mr May said: However, while smart thermostats are great for offering households more control over their energy usage and bills the fact they make adjusting the temperature so easy may not be so good for keeping arguments at bay! via War of the thermostat – HVP Magazine – Heating, Ventilating & Plumbing
There you are, tamper with your partner’s low thermostat setting policy, if you dare! We hope that you enjoyed reading our plumbing tips for winter.