Winterization is the process of protecting the condition of a vacant property by turning off the water supply and draining all the pipes. To make the property habitable again, you have to de-winterize your pipes. When done right, de-winterization ensures that the plumbing system is ready to pump water throughout the property without any concern for damages, leaky faucets or bursting pipes.
De-winterization is not a difficult task in itself. However, the consequences of improper de-winterization can be catastrophic and expensive to repair. It’s important that you do your research to ensure that you know the most vital components of your home that need to be de-winterized and cared for in a unique way. It might also be a good idea to look up general house care tips that will point out potential problem areas you may not have considered. Here are four easy tricks that will help you de-winterize any property.
1. Begin With A Thorough Inspection
The most overlooked phase of the de-winterization process is of the first inspection, which can be the most important. Spending a few extra minutes or hours doing a thorough inspection can save you days or even weeks in the long run. Not to mention the cost benefits of not having to go through unnecessary repairs.
Don’t forget to check toilets, dishwashers, under sinks and water heaters; basically, check any and all appliances and utensils connected to the plumbing system. You’re looking for signs of wear-and-tear and deterioration.
2. Turn Shut-off Valves To The Off Position
Shut-off valves are set to the on position during winterization to minimize property deterioration. When the time comes to de-winterize, do not forget to turn these valves off before you let loose the water supply. This may seem like a mundane task, but it’s important to avoid any unnecessary or avoidable damage.
3. Follow-up with fixture-by-fixture Leak Testing
Picture this: you’ve spent a few minutes performing a thorough inspection. However, even though you’re done, you’re still worried that turning on the main supply will flood the property in multiple locations. What do you do?
By going around one by one and shutting off individual valves supplying water to fixtures around the house, you can perform targeting checks for leaks without having to risk complete flooding. Leave the water on for about 20 minutes and be on the look-out for dripping water, or hissing noises.
4. Use A Water Meter For Final Assessment
Screw on the aerators onto every faucet. Make sure that every faucet around the house is turned to the off position. Now, observe the water meter. Since there is no water being used, the water meter should not be turning. If it is, that means you still have a leak somewhere.
In some cases, de-winterization can be a complicated affair. This is especially true for older properties and those that have been winterized improperly. Under these circumstances, it is often best to refer to professionals. However de-winterization doesn’t have to be an impossible task. By utilize the tips mentioned above and working with professionals, it is something that can definitely be managed.
Guest Author Bio: Emma Sturgis is a freelance writer based out of Boston. Emma recommends Coastal Plumbing Inc for your de-winterizing needs.