Cold Weather Preparation
The temperature is dropping, is your house prepared? This is the time of year to perform some checklist items to get you ready for those stormy winter days. Here are a few key items to inspect:
- Foundation vents covered
- Sump pump basin clean and pump functional
- Water pipes insulated in crawlspace
- Garden hose removed from outdoor faucets and faucet covers installed
- Gutters clear of debris and downspouts flowing freely
As we know Whatcom County gets a little wet from October till May with an abundance of heavy storms. During the storm is not the ideal time to find out your crawlspace or basement sump pump is not functional. The sump pump has been sitting dormant all summer and its best to wake it up in a controlled setting. The first thing to do is look for debris in the pump basin and clean as needed. Sump pumps have very small openings to prevent debris from destroying pump so the pump should be removed from basin and pump screen cleaned.
Once you have confirmed the basin and pump are clean re-install the pump and test that the pump float is working. You do this by pouring water into the basin and make sure the pump turns on when the water level rises in the basin and shuts off when the level goes down. If at you have questions or need help just give us a call at 360-734-6440!
The other big item on our list is preparing for freezing weather. You wake up and leave your warm bed in anticipation of the hot shower, turning the handle on your shower valve…no water! Nobody likes to start their day this way but when the Northern wind is blowing it happens.
This is why it is important to cover those foundation vents to keep out the cold and take a trip around your water system to make sure your pipe insulation is still intact. In extreme cold temperatures it is also advisable to open your cabinet doors under sinks to allow warm air to keeps the in wall pipes from freezing.
Last but certainly not least is those outdoor faucets. REMOVE THE GARDEN HOSE! Every spring we get at least 50 calls for outdoor faucets leaking. Over 90% of those calls the hose has been attached throughout the winter. Frost free outdoor faucets are designed to shut off the water back inside your home where it’s protected from cold air and drain out left over water in the faucet. If a hose is attached the water cannot drain out causing a freezing condition. For better protection against the elements we recommend installing an outdoor faucet cover that can be picked up at your local hardware store.