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Expert winter plumbing tips Chicagoland residents should always follow

Winter weather presents unique challenges for homeowners, but particularly in the Midwest, where temperatures fluctuate between balmy sunshine and blistering icy winds in the span of a day. Trying to prepare for every possible scenario is difficult, and for new homeowners still learning about their home’s plumbing and appliances, there may be areas or issues they don’t even know about. But that all changes with a little help and guidance. Here are some tried-and-true winter plumbing tips every Chicagoland resident can benefit from to prepare their home for the snow and ice.

Small Leaks Grow As Temps Drop

A minor drip or leak may seem safe to leave for another day, but when the temperature drops, these issues become major concerns. This is because water expands as it cools — so what starts as a small leak expands as water temperature starts cooling down. The freezing water increases the cracks and crevices as ice forms around the crack’s opening, expanding the fissures until a drip or trickles turns into a flood. Rather than letting these leaks get out of hand, get a jump on repairing these spots as soon as possible.

Keep The Water Heater Running and Warm Water Flowing

The only thing worse than waking up to a winter storm is waking up to a winter storm and a cold shower. As the cold settles in and becomes more constant, a home’s hot water heater starts to increase its workload, working harder to keep the water consistently warm. This extra strain placed on the water heater could be enough to push it over the edge at a most inopportune time. 

One way to help avoid this is by flushing the water heater. Sediment and minerals build up through regular use as the water heater constantly brings in new water. These materials then collect at the bottom of the heater, which makes it difficult for water to cycle properly during use as the deposits at the bottom of the tank grow larger. But, by draining and refilling the heater, homeowners can flush out the sediment and mineral deposits, helping the water heater better weather the strain of cold winter days. 

Keep The Sump Pump Pumping

Sump pumps rarely get looked at by homeowners, but they play an important role to keep water and moisture away from the vulnerable foundation of the home. However, if a sump pump is older and hasn’t been inspected, it could become overwhelmed by the sudden influx of water created by melting snow and ice. This could cause the sump pump to back up. 

When this happens, it leads to massive water damage as basements become partially flooding, waterlogging anything being used or stored in the space. This is a major headache for homeowners to deal with, so it’s best to make sure the sump pump is well maintained and has been looked at by a professional to ensure it’s ready for the rest of winter — as well as prepped for the spring thaw — long before it needs to do its duty.

Cold weather and snow pack on stress to already stressful times for homeowners, trying to continually predict and adapt to rapidly changing Chicagoland forecasts. If you run into home plumbing issues with fixtures, drips, or leaks, don’t let the issues wait until spring. Reach out to the plumbing professionals at Duane Blanton Plumbing, Sewer, Heating, and Cooling. The licensed experts have 30+ years of knowledge and experience helping homeowners keep the water running, flushing, and flowing. So you can feel confident in Duane Blanton Plumbing, Sewer, Heating, or Cooling to find a solution for any plumbing issue, no matter the size or the season outside! Give the experts at Duane Blanton a call today at (815) 781-2567, or schedule an appointment online through their convenient online scheduling portal. 


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