Follow Drain Doctor’s tips to avoid plumbing problems during the cold snap


Follow a few simple tips to avoid frozen pipes during the cold snap

With the recent snowfalls and the plummeting temperatures Drain Doctor has received higher than usual call levels from customers with frozen pipes. If your pipes are frozen it could mean that you are getting no water supply.

In general most water companies’ pipes are buried deep enough for them not to freeze, so a lot of the time it is the customer’s own pipes which are frozen. Many householders may not realise that the water company is only responsible for the water mains and service pipes outside the boundary of thier property.  Anything inside the property boundary is the responsibility of the householder.

Taking steps now to make sure the pipework leading to your home and within your property is protected from the cold can help avoid problems with frozen pipes later in the winter.

If anyone finds they have no water during this cold snap, check pipes for signs of splitting and if there is any damage, call Drain Doctor. If it is not fixed quickly, it could end up with flooding once the water thaws.

Here are a few tips to help protect your plumbing and drains for the rest of the winter:

  1. Locate and label your main stop valve. It is on the incoming mains water supply and is often under the kitchen sink. 
  2. Stop valves tend to corrode slightly with time, so once every six months check that it’s working by exercising the valve twice from fully open to fully closed and back again (and always back the valve off ‘half a turn’ from fully open once you’re done).
  3. Make sure that all your pipes and storage tanks are properly lagged and covered, especially in cooler roof areas and attics.
  4. Open the loft door to warm the roof area in very cold weather. This will stop the pipes up there from freezing up (but it will push up your heating bills – so lagging pipes is a better idea).
  5. Inspect cold water cisterns (they are probably in your loft) annually. If there are any signs of corrosion or leaking, contact a reputable plumber.
  6. Leave the heating on a low temperature to maintain circulation and warmth if you are going away for a few days.
  7. Bleed radiators for maximum efficiency.
  8. Keep curtains closed to retain heat in the home.
  9. Insulate/lag any pipes in exposed areas where they could freeze.
  10. Isolate, drain and insulate any outside taps and pipework.
  11. Try to avoid pouring fat down drains, as it will solidify fast in cold weather.
  12. Plumbing is becoming increasingly technical. Always seek a qualified professional plumber such as Drain Doctor Plumbing. Call them  24 hours a day on 0800 3357 999.
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