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The seasons are changing, and your gardening and lawn maintenance for the year is about to come to a close. You’ve put spare flowerpots away, closed up the lawnmower for the winter and you’re ready to enjoy cozying up inside while you wait for the first snowfall. You’ve gotten everything taken care of, right? Not so fast: if you haven’t taken care of your outdoor faucets, your winter prep list needs to be a little longer. These faucets are particularly susceptible to freezing temperatures, and you could end up needing an emergency plumber in Pittsburgh if you neglect them.Freeze protection pipe insulation covering faucet

3 Steps to Winterize Your Exterior Faucets

Step 1: Lose the Hose

Even hoses that tout themselves as “freeze proof” won’t do anything for your actual faucet – the hose may survive, but the water/ice accumulation could damage the faucet at the source. Drain your hoses before storing by draping them on an incline or suspended over a tall tree branch to remove any excess water. The same rule applies to any removable accessory you’ve attached to your outdoor faucet, including “splitters” that divert water into two garden hoses.

Step 2: Drain the Water

If you have access to the line that feeds your outdoor faucet, your safest option is to turn off the source and drain all the water possible from the line before closing it up. If you’re not able to close the source off, insulation on your pipes and at the faucet itself will also help a great deal. A styrofoam hose cap cover takes care of the external components, but if you’re concerned about the pipes behind it, the expert plumbers at Stahl Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning can help you locate and insulate the correct water pipes with the right insulation materials.

Step 3: Do a Final Inspection

Walk around your yard and make sure that you don’t see any water leaks or pooling from outdoor-linked plumbing. Even a slow drip can quickly turn into a pipe-wrecking expansion of ice, and a quick walkthrough now may save you an emergency plumbing service call at your Pittsburgh home when spring arrives. If you notice any excess water from outdoor hose connections, be sure to shut off the source – with a leak present, it’s the most foolproof way of preventing ice buildup.

Contact Emergency Plumbers

Use this easy three step process to winterize your outdoor faucets and when the weather starts to cool down. That way, you’ll be able to enjoy the spring weather instead of dealing with an emergency outdoor plumbing situation when you least expect it. Contact Stahl Plumbing today to prevent a winter plumbing emergency in the future.