Prepare Any Outdoor Taps and Hoses
It’s important to have a look at your pipes and check for any possible leaks. This is particularly important during the winter months, when even a small amount of water could potentially freeze and burst the pipes.
If you notice any signs of a leak, get it fixed right away. You may want to even consider having a professional check for leaks in places that are more difficult to get to (for example, the attic).
Outdoor taps should be covere, Isolate the supply to the outdoor taps and drain off any water, insulate the exterior pipework.
You can buy covers for outdoor taps online, just search for Insulated Tap Cover (frost Protection) if you wanted to get outdoor tap covered.
Know The Location Of Your Water Shut-Off Valve
In case of a plumbing emergency, it’s essential to know where your water shut-off valve is located so you can quickly turn off the water supply to prevent further damage.
This is often a tap located under the kitchen sink, but can also be located in other places in older houses, so it’s worth getting familiar with the location of this tap. Check the operation of the shut off valve, a general tip is to open it full, then turn it off by a quarter turn this prevents it locking up. If your mains stop tap is jammed up it should be replaced so that you can isolate the supply to the house in the event of a plumbing disaster.
Insulate Pipes In Unheated Areas
Insulating the pipes will help to prevent them from freezing. Using heat tape or pipe insulation, wrap all exposed pipes in any unheated areas of your home.
Keep in mind pipes that run through unheated areas, such as crawl spaces, attics, and garages, as these are particularly susceptible to freezing. Insulating these pipes with pipe sleeves or foam insulation is essential to prevent heat loss and keep them protected from the cold. Don’t forget the pipes under the sinks or in the cupboards as these can build up with condensation which when very cold can freeze.
Keep Your Home Warm At All Times
During the winter months, ensure that you keep your thermostat set to a temperature above freezing, to ensure that he home always has at least an ambient temperature at which no pipes will freeze.
Even if you are going away on holiday during the winter or you’re visiting your family for a week or two, keep the heating on (put it on a timer so it kicks in at the same times each day). Just so it keeps the house warm at all times during the colder time of year.