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Now’s the time to inspect your pipes

While the cold is returning in spurts and waves, winter is unmistakably here. And as the weather begins to settle into a more consistent string of plunging temperatures, now is the time to get out ahead of potential plumbing issues. Because winter is known not only for frigid temps and snowy skies but also for one of the most inconvenient home plumbing issues: burst pipes. Rather than being caught off guard by a cascade of unexpected water indoors, get out ahead of the issue and inspect pipes for these potential issues.

Small Leaks

The subtle dripping from small leaks is easy to overlook, but those drips become dangerous to leave unattended for too long. Small leaks in pipes or around connections can become vulnerable spots for bursts to occur, as freezing water will cause these little cracks to expand into large holes. Identifying these relatively small issues and making sure they’re taken care of before freezing temperatures hit will help ensure pipes avoid bursting. 

One leak that is beneficial, though, is the leak from a faucet. Letting faucets maintain a steady, minute drip keeps a minuscule amount of water flowing through the pipes. This small amount of running water acts as a deterrent against water freezes, as the motion of the water keeps the water slightly warmer than if it was stationary.   

Lack of Water Pressure 

Speaking of faucets, if there is an increasing lack of water pressure coming from faucets in the kitchen or bathroom, this is a tell-tale sign of an issue to look into more closely. More than likely, the sudden change in water pressure is coming from a minor blockage forming within the home’s plumbing. Left alone, this blockage will cause issues in its own right, but combined with freezing water in the pipes, and it can quickly lead to a burst pipe, as frozen water increases the pressure in the pipe until it splits. 

One resource that homeowners should avoid when addressing a clogged pipe is over the counter drain cleaners. While these chemical drain cleaners can provide temporary relief, the damage they create leaves the piper worse for wear, and incidentally, more vulnerable to issues such as bursting in freezing temperatures. As the cleaner eats through the clogged material, it also erodes the interior of the pipes, thinning the walls, and creating interior pockets and divots closer to the outer wall of the pipe which are ideal areas for ice to form. 

A Professional Inspection

The most important step homeowners can take is scheduling a professional pipe inspection before freezing temperatures swoop in, especially if there are any issues identified by homeowners. A professional will be able to conduct a thorough examination of the home’s pipes, noting and addressing any issues before they end up snowballing into something worse. An annual inspection is always a safe bet for ensuring the integrity of a home’s plumbing, so if one hasn’t been completed yet, now is an excellent time to have one scheduled and completed.

If you are worried about outdoor pipes being exposed to the elements, or indoor pipes that seem to get colder than other areas of your home, reach out to the experts at Duane Blanton Family Home Services to schedule a plumbing inspection today. The licensed professionals at Duane Blanton have over 30 years of experience in plumbing and HVAC services and will be able to identify and address issues straight away. Reach out to the experts at Duane Blanton Family Home Services today, at (815) 781-2567, or schedule service online through their convenient online scheduling portal.  

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