With spring officially here, weather permitting or not, you may have begun your spring checklist to get your Twin Cities home ready for warmer temperatures. That’s a good idea considering the mess that winter can leave behind putting your plumbing system at risk for damage. MN Plumbing & Home Services is here to lend a helping hand with a list of plumbing items that need your attention this spring to keep water and waste moving along smoothly. Here’s what to know.

TEST YOUR SUMP PUMP

Your sump pump is an essential appliance that can save your basement and home from flooding. It’s important to check to make sure it is functioning correctly at each season change. That way, you can rest assured knowing that your sump pump will work when you need it. Here’s how to inspect and test your sump pump:

  • Check to make sure the sump pump hasn’t tilted.
  • Make sure the float valve is in the right place.
  • Check the battery and wiring for any signs of corrosion or damage.
  • Test functionality by filling the pit with water until the float rises to turn on the pump.

CHECK ALL EXPOSED PIPES

Your Twin Cities home’s pipes are susceptible to damage during the winter. As water freezes, it expands and increases pressure inside pipes. It’s usually the pressure that causes pipes to crack and burst and not the expanding ice. So, take a few minutes to examine all of the exposed pipes in your home. This could include pipes under sinks, in utility rooms, and in garages, for example. If you do see signs of damaged pipes, call your trusted plumber for repairs. The pipes should be insulated to avoid future problems.

TEST FOR HIDDEN LEAKS

Hidden pipe leaks can cause a substantial amount of damage before they are detected. Even a small leak can cause water damage to drywall, flooring, wall coverings, and wood. You can perform a basic check for hidden water leaks by using the water main. Late in the evening when you don’t need anymore water, note the water meter reading. Turn off the water main and leave it off overnight. In the morning, not the water meter reading again. If you’ve used water, you have a hidden leak somewhere and need to call your plumber.

CHECK TOILETS FOR LEAKS

Leaky toilets can waste a lot of water, and the leak is only going to get worse until it’s repaired. To check for a leaky toilet flush valve assembly, put several drops of food coloring into the water in the toilet tank. Wait about an hour. If you see any of the colored water inside the toilet bowl, then you have a leaky flush valve assembly. You may try to change out the flush valve assembly yourself, or call your plumber.

FLUSH YOUR WATER HEATER

Your water heater is an essential appliance that quietly works in the background providing hot water for your home 24/7. Ideally, you want to have your water heater professionally serviced once a year to ensure it is working properly and to maximize its useful service life.

Over the course of a year, sediment and mineral deposits build up. This accumulation of sediment and minerals reduces the efficiency of your water heater and can cause strange popping and banging noises. To prevent this, your water heater should be flushed out and cleaned once a year.

  • Turn off power and gas to the water heater.
  • Turn off the water inlet valve.
  • Connect a water hose to the drain bib.
  • Run the water hose outside to a place where you can safely empty however many gallons of water your water heater holds.
  • Turn on the drain bib and all the water will drain out of the water heater.

If you need the help of a professional plumber with any of these tasks for preparing your home’s plumbing for spring, call MN Plumbing & Home Services. We help hundreds of customers each and every month and look forward to working with you, too! Call us today (952)469-8341!