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A plumber's hands are using a red wrench to fix a leaking pipe in an El Paso home.

Common Winter Plumbing Problems and How to Avoid Them

As the temperature drops, El Paso homeowners face new challenges with the plumbing. Freezing temperatures can wreak havoc on plumbing systems, leading to costly repairs and inconvenience. However, many of these problems can be avoided with the right awareness and preventive measures.

Premier Home Updates offers exceptional plumbing services to El Paso residential and commercial property owners. Contact us online or call us at (915) 355-0215 to learn more.

Frozen Pipes

Exposed pipes are vulnerable to freezing. As water inside the pipes freezes, it expands, exerting pressure on the pipe walls and potentially causing them to burst. Wrap vulnerable pipes with insulation sleeves or use heat tape to avoid water damage. You may also want to seal any cracks or gaps with caulk to prevent cold air from reaching pipes. Finally, maintain adequate heating to prevent freezing, especially in areas where pipes are located.

Pro Tip: If you’re going on holiday, allow a small trickle of water to flow through faucets to prevent the pipes from freezing.

Clogged Drains and Sewer Lines

Cold temperatures can contribute to grease, debris, and sediment buildup in drains and sewer lines, leading to clogs and backups that require professional El Paso plumbing services. To avoid a gross disaster, ensure you’re disposing of grease properly. Instead of pouring oil or fats down the drain, put used oil in an old take-out container. Freeze it and toss it into the trash once it solidifies. In the shower or sink, use drain screens to catch hair, food particles, and similar debris so they don’t clog the drain.

Water Heater Issues

The last thing you want to do is take an ice-cold shower in the middle of winter. Cold weather can strain water heaters, decreasing efficiency, reducing water pressure, or even complete failure. Flush the water heater periodically to remove sediment buildup. Wrap the heater with an insulating blanket during colder months to help retain heat and improve energy efficiency. Inspect the water heat and connection for signs of leaks or corrosion that may require prompt plumbing services in El Paso.

Sump Pump Failures

Sump pumps prevent basement flooding but can fail due to freezing temperatures or power outages. Regularly test the sump pump to ensure it’s functioning correctly, install a battery backup, and insulate the discharge pipe. 

Leaking or Burst Water Lines

Exterior water lines, such as those leading to outdoor faucets or sprinkler systems, are susceptible to freezing and bursting during the winter, requiring professional plumbing services. Before it gets too cold, shut off the water supply to outdoor plumbing and drain any residual water to prevent freezing and bursting. Wrap any exposed pipes with insulation sleeves or heat tape to improve their durability and longevity. 

High-Quality Plumbing Services in El Paso

Don’t let the winter leave you out in the cold. Take proactive measures with our plumbing services; we can help you avoid these common issues altogether. We also offer regular inspection and maintenance for your convenience. Call us at (915) 355-0215 for a free estimate for your residential or commercial property.