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Winter in Toronto is a beautiful time of year, but it can be harsh on bathroom fixtures and your home’s plumbing systems. Indeed, many Torontonians face major challenges during the winter, including frozen or burst plumbing pipes, damaged bathroom faucets, and potential water damage.

Understanding how to get your bathroom fixtures winter-ready is essential to home maintenance. In addition to saving thousands of dollars on repairs, winterizing your bathroom fixtures and plumbing system can help you avoid the inconvenience of dealing with burst pipes and other harm.

If you are leaving your home for holidays or are new at winterizing your home, this article can help you winterize your home correctly.

Let’s get started.

Tips to Follow When Winterizing Plumbing and Bathroom Fixtures in Your Toronto Home

With some planning and following these essential tips, you can save yourself from some frustrating and expensive damage.

Issues That Occur When You Do Not Winterize

  • Frozen/Burst Pipes

    Pipes can crack or burst due to the expansion that occurs when the water inside them freezes. This can lead to significant water damage to the building and expensive repairs.

    Frozen or Burst Pipes

    The likelihood of pipes bursting is substantially increased when they are frozen. The expansion of the ice inside the pipes creates pressure that degrades the structure. Broken pipes need to be fixed right away because they not only cause water damage but also interfere with the flow of water.

  • Damaged Fixtures and Appliances

    Freezing temperatures can harm exposed bathroom fixtures, including shower heads, faucets, and toilets. These fixtures could break or develop cracks from freezing, making them unusable and require replacement.

  • Water Heater Issues

    Water heaters may also be impacted by neglecting to winterize. The heater’s water may freeze due to the low temperatures, which could harm the heating components or the tank itself. This may lead to a loss of hot water supply and the need for replacement or repairs.

  • Growth of Mould and Mildew

    Pipe leaks resulting from freezing or burst conditions can produce a moist atmosphere perfect for mould and mildew growth. This increases the overall cost of ignoring winterization because it presents health risks and necessitates intensive cleaning and remediation work.

How to Winterize Your Toronto Home’s Plumbing and Bathroom Fixtures

Now that you are aware of the various problems you can face, let’s discuss the winterization of plumbing and bathroom fixtures in your Toronto home.

1. Update Existing Plumbing and Bathroom Fixtures

This change can have a massive effect on the overall maintenance of your bathroom. Updating your Toronto home’s plumbing or bathroom fixtures is not just an aesthetic change; it can also be functional.

With time, older pipes and faucets can sustain damage that can lead to leaks and other problems, particularly in the winter. If your home has old plumbing or bathroom fixtures, chances are they do not help conserve water. This means higher utility bills.

The fastest way to improve this is to install new bathroom and plumbing fixtures. Changing your plumbing and bathroom fixtures can also give you a good return on your investment.

2. Let Your Bathroom Faucet Water Drip

Little tips like this one can help you properly winterize your home as the temperature outside drops. Keep your kitchen or bathroom faucets slightly dripping to prevent damage to your plumbing system and fixtures.

Bathroom Faucet Water Drip

Allowing your bathroom faucet’s water to drip ever so slightly will keep the water in the pipes moving, thus preventing them from freezing up. The drip allows a continuous flow through the pipe, stops your pipes from bursting, and releases the pressure that builds up as water freezes.

3. Prepare a Vacant Home

Toronto can experience dramatic winter weather. For this reason, if you are travelling for the holidays, you need to plan ahead. It takes more than just putting away your garden hose to prepare your Toronto home for the winter months; you also need a plan to safeguard your bathroom and plumbing fixtures.

Here are some things you need to do:

  • Make sure to turn off the main water valve in the house. If you live in an apartment building, ask your maintenance personnel to turn it off.
  • Draining the toilet tanks and flushing the toilets after turning off the main water valve will help preserve your Toronto home’s bathroom fixtures.
  • To prevent any leftover water from freezing, turn off all the water taps in your home. The plumbing system will have much less pressure, even though there will still be some water in the pipes.
  • Make sure to insulate your pipes from the cold to give them an extra layer of defence.
  • Never turn off the heat to prevent the pipes from freezing, and maintain a steady temperature of at least 12°C.

These tips will help you save your Toronto home’s plumbing and bathroom fixtures from damage.

4. Seal Leaks and Cracks

Doing small renovations during the holiday season can prove beneficial. In this case, it is best to start by inspecting your home for gaps, cracks, or leaks that allow cold air to penetrate.

Using caulk and foam is a good way to seal leaks and cracks. This process helps prevent heat loss and protects your bath fixtures, faucets, and plumbing from losing heat.

5. Drain Outdoor Hoses

This is best done before the first frost. Draining and disconnecting outdoor hoses is a good idea; turning off the main water supply will help prevent water from backing up inside your home.

The hose needs to be fully detached next. Then drain it by holding one end while the remaining water runs out naturally. Once the hose is drained of all water, it is important to properly store it in your garage or other sheltered area of your home.

Even frost-free outdoor faucets are subject to freezing if connected to your water supply, so this rule still applies to them.

6. Open Cabinet Doors

Open the cabinet doors beneath the sinks on very cold nights to let warm air from inside the house circulate around the pipes. This is another smart choice for your Toronto home’s bathroom fixtures and indoor plumbing.

Keeping your indoor plumbing and bath fixtures closer to room temperature helps prevent freezing overnight.

FAQ

  • Why is winterizing my plumbing system and bathroom fixtures so important?

    Winterization is essential to avoid frozen pipes, which can result in expensive damage. Water expands when it freezes, leading to pipe bursts, leaks, and water damage.

  • When should I begin winterizing my plumbing system and bathroom fixtures?
    The best time to begin winterization is usually in late fall before temperatures consistently drop below freezing. By taking preventative action, you can steer clear of plumbing problems in the winter.
  • Can I winterize my bathroom fixtures on my own, without hiring an expert?
    Yes, a lot of winterization tasks are doable as do-it-yourself projects. However, it is advised that you seek advice from a licensed plumber if you are unsure or have a complicated plumbing system.
  • If my pipes are already frozen, what should I do?
    If you suspect frozen pipes, turn off your water supply and gently thaw them using a hair dryer or towels dipped in hot water. To thaw pipes, avoid using open flames.
  • Are there any products that can help with winterizing plumbing systems?
    Yes, there are products available to help protect plumbing systems from freezing temperatures, such as pipe insulation, faucet covers, and heating cables. These are available at hardware stores.
  • Is it safe to use antifreeze in my plumbing system?
    While antifreeze is used in some plumbing systems, it is critical to use plumbing-specific products. Before using antifreeze, consult a professional plumber to ensure it is appropriate for your system.

 
Winterizing your plumbing system and bathroom fixtures in your Toronto home will help you save on repairs and damages that usually occur after the winter season. Damaged bath fixtures and plumbing systems are disruptive to your daily life and can be very expensive to fix. Taking proactive measures can save you money. Need help? Consult the experts at The Reno Superstore and shop for bathroom fixtures and faucets online.

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