Ensuring your home stays comfortable and functional year-round means proper care and annual maintenance. When it comes to outdoor plumbing, preventative maintenance is necessary but not difficult. With only a few simple steps and minimal monetary investment, you can easily avoid frozen pipes and keep your water running.

1. Drain the Water: The first and most important step to preventing outdoor pipes from freezing is to drain the water from outdoor faucets. Water expands when it freezes, so pipes and hoses that are already full when they freeze are more likely to burst. Locate the shut-off valve inside your home, which is usually close to the faucet, and turn it off. Then, open the outdoor faucet to drain as much water as possible.

2. Disconnect the Hose: Once the hose is empty, disconnect any hoses attached to the faucet. This prevents water from getting trapped in the hose and freezing, which, in addition to protecting the hose, also avoids putting extra pressure on the faucet and causing damage. Remember to store your hoses indoors during the winter to prevent them from cracking or becoming brittle.

3. Invest in a Frost-Free Hose Bib: If you're tired of the annual routine of draining and disconnecting your outdoor plumbing, or if you have a hose or two you cannot disconnect a frost-free hose bib is your best bet. These devices completely replace the original hose bib and have a shut-off valve located much farther back, where it will be inside the house. As a result, it should be protected from freezing temperatures and eliminates the need to manually drain the faucet.

4. Insulate for Extra Protection: In areas with extremely cold temperatures, you might consider adding an extra layer of protection by insulating your outdoor faucets. Wrap the faucet and exposed pipe with pre-cut foam insulation or weatherproof tape. It won’t stop the freeze, but it will help retain heat and reduce the risk of burst pipes from extreme temperatures.

Remember: Even with these precautions, be mindful of local weather conditions. If a severe freeze is forecasted, it's always best to err on the side of caution and take additional measures, such as leaving a trickle of water running from the faucet or covering the faucet with insulation or a thick cloth.

Beat the Freeze with Ease

By following these simple steps, you can effectively prepare your outdoor faucets for winter and prevent expensive plumbing emergencies. Taking preventative measures now can save you time, money, and frustration in the long run.
Need help with your outdoor plumbing? Unique Indoor Comfort’s team of local plumbing services experts at Unique Indoor Comfort is here to help. We provide comprehensive local plumbing services, including installation, maintenance, and repair of outdoor faucets and other plumbing systems. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and keep your home winter-ready!

To schedule a consultation, contact us at (610) 825-4400. We look forward to working with you!

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