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Blogs from December, 2021

Three Common Winter Plumbing Problems


No one is happy when a plumbing problem strikes, but plumbing problems can be even worse when the weather turns cold. Here are some of the most common winter plumbing problems in Concord, CA, how you can prevent them, or what to do about them when they happen.

1. Grease in Pipes

Though this is a problem throughout the year, the cold weather makes it easier for oil and grease to clog your pipes. These fats are part of the pipe sludge that can cause clogs. When the weather gets cold, the sludge congeals in the pipes. Though you likely know not to pour grease down the drain, you should also consider wiping out greasy pans before washing them

Prevention: If you do make this mistake and get a clog, call a professional.

Solution: Avoid pouring any grease down the drain, especially during the cold months.

2. Leaks and Breaks

Water running through your lines creates a lot of pressure on your pipes. When you add freezing temperatures to the mix, the problem is compounded. Freezing weakens pipes as the water expands inside. In our area, freezes aren’t the norm, but that means you have to keep an eye out for them when they are expected.

Prevention: Insulate all your pipes and outdoor fixtures with the help of a professional to make sure it’s done right. Keep your house at an adequate temperature to heat indoor pipes, and, when you know a freeze is coming, let faucets drip until temps normalize.

Solution: Call a professional to fix your broken pipes immediately.

  • Dead Water Heater

Temperature changes in winter place a lot of pressure on your water heater, even in mild climates. The water is colder coming in, reducing the temperature in the tank and forcing your heater to work constantly. This can wear out the heating element, among other parts in the tank. The cold temperatures compound issues if the tank is older or already has some problems.

Prevention: Have a professional inspect your tank regularly. Reduce the tank temperature to 120° F, and limit hot showers in winter months.

Solution: Call a plumber to replace faulty parts, or the entire tank, if it fails.

If you live in Concord, CA or the surrounding areas and are experiencing any of these problems, don’t hesitate to call Absolute Plumbing & Drain.