Winter weather can be harsh on many aspects of your home, including your drains. Cold temperatures, snow, and ice can all lead to issues with clogged or frozen drains, which can be a major inconvenience and potentially cause serious damage – which is why winter is our busiest time.
To prevent these issues and protect your drains during the winter months, there are a few steps you can take.
One of the most effective ways to protect your drains in winter is to use drain covers. These covers, also known as drain grates or strainers, fit over the top of your drains to prevent debris from entering and causing clogs. They are particularly useful for outdoor drains, as leaves and other garden waste can easily accumulate in them during the fall months and then freeze in place during the winter. I always advise customers to collect all their fallen leaves, especially if they have trees on their land.
In addition to using drain covers, you can also take preventative measures to keep your drains clear and flowing freely. This can include regularly cleaning your drains by pouring hot water down them or using a mixture of baking soda and vinegar to break up any debris or buildup. You should also be mindful of what you pour down your drains, grease and oil can solidify and cause huge blockages.
If you live in an area with extremely cold winters, you may need to take additional steps to prevent your drains from freezing. This can be a serious issue, as frozen drains can burst and cause extensive damage to your home. To prevent this from happening, you can insulate your pipes and wrap them in heat tape to keep them warm. You should also ensure that your home is properly insulated and that any outdoor faucets are turned off and drained to prevent freezing.
If you do end up with a frozen drain, it’s important to act quickly to thaw it out before it has a chance to burst. You can use a hair dryer or heat lamp to gently warm the frozen area, or you can apply a heating pad or hot water bottle to the outside of the pipe. Just be sure to use caution when applying heat to your pipes, as they can become damaged if they become too hot.
In addition to the steps you can take to prevent and address frozen drains, it’s also a good idea to have a plan in place in case of an emergency. This can include knowing where the main water shut-off valve is located and having the contact for a drain company like us in case you need to call for assistance.
Overall, protecting your drains in winter requires a combination of preventative measures and being prepared for any potential issues that may arise. By using drain covers, keeping your drains clean and clear, and taking steps to prevent freezing, you can help ensure that your drains stay in good working order throughout the winter season.