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Tips for Winterizing Your Cottage Plumbing

Posted on 17 October 2023

Soon, the colder, harsher winter weather will be here and impacting our treasured cottages. We need to winterize the cottage before we close it up for the season. Even if you will use it all winter, you might still benefit from some winterization tasks. 

A failure to winterize your cottage before the freezes of winter begins could result in your pipes bursting, causing catastrophic damage, including to water-based appliances and fixtures that can be challenging and expensive to repair.

Let’s have a quick look at what the winterization process your plumbing looks like:

  • Drain the pipes: You should also take steps to drain your pipes to prevent them from freezing. After you shut off the main water supply, flush the toilets in your home and keep doing so until all the water in the tank is gone. Turn on all faucets, showers and tubs to drain the rest of the water.
  • Seal up air leaks & keep the cold out: If you find any areas where air could be entering the home, make sure to seal up those leaks. Even small spaces and holes can allow cold air to flow through and potentially freeze pipes. Look around doors, windows, wall sockets and switches and areas where there might be openings into the inside of your home. Any such openings should be sealed with caulk. If the area is too large to fill with caulk, you should use expanding spray foam to seal the area. In addition to sealing up any air leaks, you should also take other steps to keep the cold air out. This includes keeping garage doors closed and sealing up windows with sealant or plastic over the course of the winter.
  • Insulation: You could add some insulation to your pipes, especially pipes that run along exterior walls or in uninsulated areas, like crawl spaces. Foam insulation and electrical tape can go a long way toward preventing pipe freezes.
  • Keep the heat on: Even if you’re going to be away from the property for an extended period of time, you might wish to keep the heat on at least to a minimal level (think mid-50s) to make it harder for the pipes to freeze. If you live at the property all winter long, you should make sure to keep the heat on at a comfortable level.
  • Leave taps open: As a last resort, you might consider leaving faucets open ever so slightly to create a drip of water that will prevent it from freezing (moving water will not freeze nearly as easily). 

For more tips for winterizing your home to prevent issues with frozen pipes and possible water damage, contact us at PipeMasters. Our licensed professionals can help: info@pipemasters.ca or (289) 404-9063. 

PipeMasters is part of Oakridge Plumbing Ontario Ltd. and serves the East GTA, Durham Region, North to Lindsay & Peterborough, out to Cobourg and all points in between. All Rights Reserved.


Tags:Plumbing Tips