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6 Fall Plumbing Tips

Fall Plumbing – Mainers know that now that the chillier fall temperatures have arrived, it won’t be long before it gets really cold. Winter’s arrival can leave homeowners unprepared for the implications of temperatures below freezing.

There are some pretty simple preparations you can make now to ensure your plumbing fares the winter without any emergencies.

Save yourself costly repairs by incorporating our plumbing tips into this weekend’s list of chores:

Frozen water fixture

Outdoor Faucets & Fall Plumbing Fixtures

Disconnect outside garden hoses.

If you leave your hoses connected, any leftover water in them can freeze. Water expands when it freezes, causing faucets and any connected pipes inside your home to freeze and burst.

Make sure outside plumbing fixtures aren’t dripping or leaking.

If you notice any leaks coming from your hose spout, get them repaired now. When it freezes, the water pressure in these pipes will expand and the pressure will crack the pipes. It doesn’t matter if the pipe is made of plastic, copper or steel. Even the tiniest crack can cause a serious burst pipe which will lead to flooding and devastating damages.

Turn off interior shutoff valves to outdoor plumbing.

If you’re fortunate enough to have interior shutoff valves for outdoor plumbing such as spigots, close them and drain water from the outside lines.

It’s not a bad idea to cover outside faucets. A faucet insulation kit can be purchased at many hardware stores, home centers or online.

Insulated copper water pipes

Fall Plumbing Pipes

Insulate pipes in unheated areas.

Unheated areas of your home, including the basement, garages and crawl spaces are at risk of freezing. Help prevent this by wrapping them in pipe insulation. Be especially mindful of pipes running near exterior walls.

Hot Water Heater

Hot water heaters work overtime during cold months. Make sure it is working properly. Check around the unit and look for any drips or water puddles. Look for any of these water heater warning signs. If you notice any potential problems, call the professionals at Gelinas HVAC immediately. If your hot water heater is more than 10 years old, start planning for a replacement.

Sump Pump

Inspect and clean your sump pump unit and sump hole/pit.

Sump pumps are very exposed to extreme cold submerged in the sump hole, so they can freeze. This will stop your pump from working properly, or at all. Give both the pump equipment itself a thorough cleaning and clean out the sump pit while you’re at it. This chore will not only protect your pump, but prolong its lifespan and prevent odors.


These plumbing tips are intended for homes that remain occupied throughout the cold months. There are many additional steps should be taken to winterize a property that will be left vacant for weeks or months at a time. Gelinas HVAC is here  for winterizing such properties.

Please CONTACT US should you have any concerns or questions about your plumbing this fall!