Winter… love it or hate it, it comes every year! While it does bring hot cocoa, sledding, snowball fights, and snuggling under the blankets, it can also bring frozen pipes, high utility bills, and other cold-weather plumbing issues. Let’s enjoy the season without having to call in the plumber for emergencies (though you know we’ll be right there for our Statesville and Iredell County customers whenever you need us!). Fortunately, there are some easy steps you can take to get your system winter-ready.
Every year, nearly 100 million of us take to the road, the rails, and the skies to visit family and friends for the holidays. While we’re worrying about the presents we need to wrap, the items we need to pack, or the Ubers we need to order when we arrive, there is another concern to think about: plumbing. If it didn’t make your busy holiday to-do list, you’re not alone! But by taking a few easy steps, you can prepare your plumbing system for winter - and for your absence.
Drops in temperature can have a significant impact on your plumbing system. To prevent big problems down the road, take a bit of time to prep for the cold weather and any absences you are planning. The last thing you want to deal with when you come back from holiday travel is burst pipes, a damaged roof, or some smelly sewer line issues.
As we approach the holiday season, Statesville residents and business owners will be traveling all over to visit friends and family. Many will lock the doors on their homes, storefronts, and warehouses for several days in a row, and unfortunately, some may return to find a plumbing emergency. A plumbing emergency occurs when a catastrophic failure of your pipes or plumbing systems results in a steady water leak. This kind of seemingly unstoppable drip, or sometimes even torrent of water flowing into your home or business can cause significant damage.
We have developed this guide to help make sure you are prepared to respond quickly in the case of a plumbing emergency. If you have any doubt, make sure you contact your plumbing professionals at Action Service Company.
Who can resist the charm of fall! From great temperatures and foliage that is too stunning to believe, autumn is the perfect time to get out and enjoy the natural beauty of the Statesville, North Carolina area... And it’s the perfect time to think ahead to winter and get your fall plumbing maintenance tasks checked off your to-do list.
When you’re from North Carolina, you get (somewhat!) used to prepping for tropical storms and dealing with the aftermath. We take steps like making sure our roofs are in good repair, boarding windows, securing outdoor furniture/equipment, and stocking up on batteries, food, and water. But did you ever think about how severe weather affects your plumbing? Heavy rain can strain pipes and drainage systems to their limit. What are some common storm-related problems - and how can you protect your system?
Look Out for These Plumbing Issues
Severe weather can affect your plumbing in the following ways:
- Broken Pipes. Heavy rain can lead to shifting in the ground, particularly if we’ve had a dry spell. This places a lot of pressure on underground pipes. If you have older galvanized steel pipes, you’re at a higher risk of damage as they corrode. If you have broken pipes, you may notice grit or debris in your water or it may be discolored.
- Blockage. Storms whip up a lot of debris (e.g. sticks, leaves, dirt, etc.), and it gets swept into storm drains and downpipes. After intense rainfall, the accumulation of debris can be too much for pipes to handle, leading to blockages. And a plunger is not going to cut it!
- Septic Flooding. Do you have a septic tank? Tropical storms (or even heavy rains) can flood your drain field. Your tank cannot operate properly. When drain water can’t escape, it just goes right back up through your pipes.
- Clogged Gutters. When debris becomes trapped in your gutters, it adds enormous weight to your roof. The last thing you need during a storm is a damaged roof! Debris on your roof can also block your drain vents. If you notice a sewage smell seeping through your drains, this is a likely culprit.
Preparing Your Plumbing for Severe Storms
There are some easy steps you can take to help avoid plumbing damage:
- Clear out any slow drains. If you are already having issues with slow drains, blockages, or backups, severe weather will only make the problem worse. Pour water through your drains to see if they are working properly. If it takes longer than a few seconds, try a drain cleaner. If that doesn’t do it, call us.
- Maintain your septic system. Routine maintenance is key to avoiding issues related to weather.
- Clear debris from your home. Attack the gutters and drains, ensuring they are clear of debris.
- Stock up on water. Make sure you have about 3-7 days of drinking water per every person in your household. If a storm’s coming, fill up your tub to help with flushing.
- Check on Water Boil Advisories. If your city or municipality has issued a Water Boil Advisory, follow directions for water usage. If the water supply was shut off and then restored, run your water for five minutes. You might hear a hammering sound for a bit. This is the trapped air being released from the pipes. Use a water softener to help remove chloramine, which is added to kill bacteria during a water shut-off. Be sure to run all of your faucets for one minute.
If you have any other questions - or need help preparing for or dealing with the aftermath of a tropical storm - do not hesitate to call Action Service. We’re here to help.