Why Winterize Your Outdoor Faucets?
Living in Vancouver we generally have mild winters compared to the rest of Canada. It is easy to get complacent and choose to not winterize our homes since we’ll likely only have a few days per year that the temperature will dip below zero.
Yet, when temperatures drop below freezing level you’ll save yourself thousands of dollars and the headache of unnecessary plumbing repairs from ruptured pipes and water damage if you do some simple preventative maintenance around your home.
Winterizing your exterior hose bibs (outdoor taps or faucets) is a super simple do-it-yourself home care job regardless of how handy or not-so-handy you are.
First and foremost, ensure that hoses are disconnected from all of your exterior hose bib taps. In the Vancouver areas, this should be done before the end of October.
Material costs to insulate your taps and protect them from freezing can cost less then $10 and will take you less than 15-minutes to install.
If you have a newer home with “frost free” hose bibs, you simply need to detach any hoses, ensure your tap is tightly shut off and the tap has been able to drip dry. These new innovative “frost free” hose bibs shut off water from further in your wall systems so that the warmth from within your home ensures that there is no water in the exterior pipe or tap to freeze and cause cracking or a rupture.
For others that have traditional exterior faucets it is important to detach any hoses, shut the tap off tightly and then wrap or tightly cover the tap with something to insulate it and prevent it from freezing.
Here are a few examples of of ways to winterize your traditional exterior tap:
With styrofoam pipe covering which you can affix with duct tape.
Purchase a special covering from your local hardware store.
An alternate cover you can purchase online or at a local hardware store.
If you have crafted an alternate and just as effective system to insulate your exterior tap we’d love to hear about it. Feel free to email photos and description of what you’ve crafted to email@example.com