The holidays are almost upon us. Leaves are changing colors and falling and soon we can anticipate snow covering the bare branches they have left behind. Women are breaking out their sweaters and pumpkin-spiced everything is literally everywhere you look. While you are raking leaves, planning for Thanksgiving dinner, and prepping for the Christmas rush, what could you be forgetting?
Winterizing. In particular, winterizing your hose bibs.
Maybe in your neck of the woods you call them sillcocks, outdoor faucets, or spigots… call them what you want now, but what you’ll be calling them next spring are four letter words and leaky scrap metal if you don’t act now. Failing to winterize hose bibs is the perfect recipe for ruining that Christmas party you’ve been looking forward to for weeks. The last thing any of us needs are frozen pipes and a 9-1-1 plumbing emergency. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a victim to circumstance with this helpful 3 step tip from Heiland Home Services!
1) Your first step is going to be to locate the hose bibs installed on your home. If you’ve lived in your home for any amount of time, you’re probably familiar with these locations, but it’s important to remember that each bib is a potential failure point, and each bib will most likely have its own shutoff to find as well. Locate the shutoff valve for each bib inside your house, often in the basement, crawl space, or utility room, and turn it clockwise to the full off position.
2) Now that the water supply is turned off to the bib, proceed to disconnect any attached hoses, leaving the outside handle OPEN. Leaving the handle in the open position prevents winter pressure buildup caused by the freezing of any remaining liquid in the pipe.
3) If your indoor shutoff has a drain, place a bucket or container under the valve and loosen the thumbscrew to allow the remaining water in the line to drain.
Believe it or not, that’s it, you’re done! Rest easy knowing you’ve taken the necessary steps of annual home maintenance to avoid future disaster! If you’ve noticed any damage, would like to discuss the possibility of upgrading old or worn out bibs, or stumbled upon this blog entry come spring after it’s too late (Oops!) contact Heiland Home Services, “Bringing QUALITY back to the trades!”
A) Don’t forget to fully drain those hoses and store them properly, preferably in a heated garage of basement, so they are in good shape when you break them out next spring!
B) If you’ve had freezing issues in the past, give yourself peace of mind by installing a relatively inexpensive insulated faucet cover, which you can pick up at your friendly neighborhood hardware store.