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Winter Pipe Maintenance Tips

Wednesday January 14, 2009

Wrap Up for Winter
Wrap exposed pipes with insulating material.  Pipes under kitchen sinks, in crawl spaces, near windows or in unheated basements are areas susceptible to freezing.  

Find Your Shut-off Valve
Locate your inside water shutoff valve now!  The shut-off valve controls all of the water into your home.  If  a pipe bursts knowing the location of your shut-off valve and how to turn it off, can save valuable time and prevent water damage.  

The shut-off valve may be located in the basement, under the kitchen sink, in a utility closet, near the hot water heater, or even under the house in a crawl space.  If you can not locate or do not have a shut-off valve call your plumber.  

Try turning off your shut-off valve. Try turning on each of the faucets in your house, if no water comes out you found the main shut-off valve.  Once you locate the main shut-off valve mark it so everyone in your family can find it should an emergency occur.  A brightly colored ribbon works great.  

Make Sure You Have it Covered
If your house has a crawl space, cover the outside vents to prevent winter winds form entering and freezing pipes.  Keep the garage door closed if you have a slab foundation.  Some water pipes are located under concrete floors in the garage.