Winter can be brutal in many parts of our country and here in Georgia, we can certainly have a few nights or weeks of freezing temperatures. So it’s important to take heed and properly maintain your outdoor plumbing to avoid cracked pipes and leaks.
What can homeowners do to winterize their outdoor faucets and protect them?
6 Easy Steps To Keep Outdoor Faucets Safe From Freezing Temperatures
1. Locate the shut off valve that control your outdoor faucets. This is usually in the garage of most homes normally close to the outdoor faucet of your home. But it can also be close to your home’s water heater as well. If you don’t know where this is you can call a plumber for some help.
2. Turn this shut off valve off.
3. Remove any hoses that are attached to the outdoor faucets and store them inside your garage or your home for the winter to keep them protected. The time to do this is normally around late fall or early winter. This depends on when you start seeing freezing temperatures which is anything below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. Once the hoses are removed, turn on your outdoor faucets all the way so that any remaining water in those pipes is released. Let it drip for about 1 minute until you are sure that all the water has been leaked out.
5. Turn off your outdoor faucets once the water has all been released and you are done.
6. But, you can take an extra step and use any of the products available today to cover your hose bib for the winter OR you can upgrade your faucet to a frost proof model.
Do I Need To Winterize My Outside Faucets?
The reason to protect your outdoor faucets and other outdoor plumbing in the winter time is to keep those pipes from cracking.
Your water pipes will have water left in them even if you haven’t used them for awhile. If these pipes are not properly insulated or drained, when the temperature gets to freezing or below – that water will freeze. And when it does, it expands taking up more space in the pipe than when it was liquid.
The pressue in that pipe can go from 40 lbs per square inch up to 40,000 psi – that’s a tremendous amount of pressure. This could then cause your pipe to burst or crack. This of course, can lead to water leaking from that pipe causing possible damage to your walls, floors and of course a higher water bill.
But, in all honesty, winterizing any outdoor plumbing really depends on where you live.
If you live in an area that experiences temperatures that reach freezing or below (32 degrees Fahrenheit or less) then YES, you absolutely do need to winterize all your outdoor plumbing and that includes your outdoor faucets.
A home in Clayton, Georgia which is in the North Georgia mountains will certainly get more freezing weather than a home in Valdosta, Georgia which is very close to the border to Florida.
If you have any questions about winterizing your outdoor plumbing, call Atlantis Plumbing today at 770-443-8229. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.