Preparing for Winter’s Chill
No one can predict what Mother Nature has in store for us, but even relatively mild winters can put stress on homes and households. Observing good winterizing practices will help you protect the water service in your home, prevent damages, and save you time and money when the cold weather hits.
Here are a few helpful winterizing tips for you to take into consideration for this upcoming season:
- Disconnect and drain outside hoses and store them inside for the winter. This will extend the life of the hose by preventing freezing and breakage.
- Turn off outside spigot valves from inside your home, and then leave the valves slightly open to allow it to drain water. This will prevent them from being damaged by ice.
- Make sure underground irrigation systems have been properly winterized. This includes blowing out the system to clear it of all water. Make sure to turn off all automatic timers and supply valves. Remove timer’s back up battery.
- Insulate water pipes in unheated areas using foam pipe insulation and seal leaks that are allowing cold air to flow in using spray foam insulation. Both can be found at any home center.
- Locate and mark the main water shut-off valve in your home so that it can be located quickly in the case of a leak emergency. This is usually located in your basement and is in line with your meter pit on your front lawn.
- Keep your garage doors closed to keep out as much winter cold as possible.
- Check that the water meter pit cover is securely locked down and not cracked or broken. Report any problems immediately to the Smithtown/St. James Water District service department for assistance.
- Snowbirds – make sure your heat is set to a safe temperature, no lower than 55°F and contact a plumber to have your home winterized during your time in warmer climates.