Winter is definitely here! We don’t know about you, but the cold weather makes us want to curl up under a warm blanket and start cooking something savory in the kitchen. But Texas homes aren’t always prepared for the temperatures that winter brings. From frozen pipes to faulty heating units, cold weather can wreak havoc on your home if you’re not prepared. So we gathered a few basic tips to keep your home and family ready for those days that see freezing temps.
Winter is the perfect time to gather friends and family inside your home for dinner parties. But be cautious when preparing your meals! Tossing food scraps down the garbage disposal might seem like an easy way to clean up. But certain items should stay out of the sink. Pouring liquid oils and fats down the drain might seem fine. But the fat will congeal down the line and can eventually cause a clog. Also, avoid foods like rice and noodles. The disposal will turn foods like this into a thick paste that will coat your drains. This can make it hard for other items to move through the pipes. For more tips about garbage disposal safety, check out this blog.
Also, if you have guests spending the night and you have a tank water heater, make sure everyone is out of the shower before starting your dishwasher!
One of the biggest plumbing headaches that come with winter weather is the possibility of frozen pipes. Just like a soda can be left in the freezer, water freezes and expands in the pipes, which can cause them to burst. If you notice a burst pipe, turn off the water main line to prevent flooding. Call Strittmatters at (940) 566-1122 to get an expert plumber out quickly to assess the damage and begin repairs.
There are a few things you can do to help prevent frozen pipes when the weather gets cold. Be sure to disconnect all outside hoses and cover all outside faucets. Inside your house, be sure to keep the thermostat set to at least 68 degrees. Even if you won’t be home, keeping a steady temperature will help keep pipes warm enough to not freeze over. Opening cabinets to allow warm air to circulate around pipes can also help prevent a freeze.
Speaking of warm air, have you noticed any cold drafts or cold pockets of air inside your home? Be sure to check your doors and windows for any gaps that allow cold air inside. Sealing air leaks will keep your home warmer and save you money on your energy bills. Another tip to save money on your energy bills is to have your heater inspected every year. Furnaces put in tons of work over the season and it’s important to schedule regular maintenance to keep things running smoothly. Identifying a small issue before it becomes a major problem will save you money and headaches later down the line.
If you notice any heating or plumbing problems brought on by the cold weather, give us a call. We’ll send an expert technician out to meet with you and assess the issue. We hope everyone is staying warm out there!