A pipe winterization checklist for Seattle homeowners | Washington Energy Services

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A pipe winterization checklist for Seattle homeowners

Sloan Newman | 11/10/2016 | Posted in Plumbing

Seattle’s winters are usually mild, but a good cold snap can cause substantial damage to your plumbing if it isn’t properly winterized. In addition to pipe replacement costs, burst pipes can cause expensive water damage to your home, so it makes sense to ensure that your home plumbing is properly winterized.

If you’re concerned about preparing your pipes for winter, look over this quick checklist and contact a plumbing service to help ensure your home’s pipes are properly prepared for the winter months:

  • Check out your pipe insulation – Pipe insulation is one of your most effective means of defense against frozen pipes. Pipes should be wrapped in insulation of recent manufacture. It’s tough to check all of the necessary pipes yourself, as they may run through some hard to reach areas, so it’s worthwhile to have professional plumbers check insulation.
  • Visually inspect your pipes – Taking a look at your pipes can be one of the quickest ways of identifying problems. If pipes show cracks or leaks, you’ll need to get a professional to repair or replace the faulty pipe. Again, finding pipes and identifying damage can be tricky, so it’s worthwhile to get a plumber to handle the work.
  • Inspect your home for cracks – Cracks and holes along the outside walls of your home or in your foundation can allow cold air to reach your pipes. By inspecting your home for these flaws, you can take proactive steps to seal cracks and holes and better prepare your home for winter.
  • Check for signs of frozen pipes – Identifying frozen pipes and correcting the situation can help prevent damage to your home. If you turn on your faucet and nothing comes out, it can be an indicator of frozen pipes. Also, if you’re hearing water running even when your faucet is turned off and no water is coming out of it, it’s likely that your pipes are leaking.

If you have frozen pipes, a professional plumbing service can help safely thaw your pipes. Under no circumstances should you use a blowtorch to thaw a frozen pipe, as you may injure yourself or start a house fire.

  • Common sense solutions – If you know a cold snap is coming, take proactive steps to avoid frozen pipes such as disconnecting water hoses, turning off and draining sprinkler systems and wrapping up exposed pipes.

Water damage to other portions of your home is typically the most costly consequence of a burst pipe. It can be quite expensive if leakage or flooding goes on for an extended period of time. The average insurance claim for water damage resulting from frozen pipes is around $15,000, according to State Farm Insurance, so it’s well worth your while to invest a little time in inspecting your pipes and calling a plumber if necessary. When choosing a plumber, it’s important to pick one with an established track record of exceptional customer service and professional expertise.

Washington Energy Services is a family-owned business providing heating and cooling services as well as professional plumbing services.  Founded in 1957, Washington Energy Services has generations of experience in providing comprehensive plumbing solutions, including sales, installation and service. A member of the Puget Sound Energy Contractor Alliance Network, Washington Energy Services has an excellent local business reputation.

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