Returning to Your Winter Home: What You Need to Know About Plumbing and HVAC Systems

When you return to Arizona for the colder months, it is likely that your winter home will not quite feel the same. That is because even with good winter HVAC preparation in Mesa, AZ, your home still requires time and effort to prepare for inhabitation. Here are five steps you need to make your home a livable space again for the winter:

  • Turn on the electricity: Before leaving your home, it is expected that you will turn off the circuits to reduce fire hazards and energy waste. Normally, all you need to leave running is the lighting and HVAC system. Now that you have returned, go to the fuse box and turn everything back on. Without fully functioning circuits, you will not be able to get the plumbing to work again.
  • Replenish water supply: Plumbing is vulnerable in winter, and even Arizona has freezing nights. You likely emptied the tank heater and cleared lines before you left, but now it is time to activate all of this again. Reconnect any pipes that you disconnected and turn on the shutoff valves. Give water heaters a chance to refill, and run water through fixtures to clear out rust or debris. If you have a water softener, reactivate that, too. You will likely hear hissing sounds as you turn on the main water supply and any shutoff valves. This is normal, as air often gets trapped while your winter home is unoccupied.
  • Be careful with plumbing fixtures: You want to handle plumbing during winter in Mesa, AZ one room at a time. Start with a bathroom and open the fixture about halfway. You will hear a hiss, and vigorous water flow should follow. Once you check all the running water fixtures, move on to the water in refrigerators and ice makers. It is a good idea to change any filters, as the old ones might leave water tasting stale. Another challenging appliance is the dishwasher. Run it first without dishes so it can work out any issues that affect water supply and draining. After that, it should run well without incident. Once you finish these steps, check the fixtures again—at this point, they should be running normally.
  • Plug in appliances: Even if you turn off the electricity, it is still a good idea to unplug appliances before leaving your home for the season. Upon your return, you can plug them back in. The same is true of any lamps or small appliances you left unplugged.
  • Turn on the gas: Your gas-powered appliances and hot water tanks will not run without a functioning supply. You likely turned off the gas supply to prevent leaks and returning to your home to carbon monoxide poisoning. Now that you are back, turn it back on so you can enjoy hot water and run your kitchen appliances.

PlumbSmart Plumbing Heating and Air can assist you if there are any repair or maintenance issues after winter HVAC preparation in Mesa, AZ. We know plumbing in winter can be fussy, and we are prepared to get it working again. Contact us today to schedule a visit.