How to Unwinterize Your Home

If you leave your home in Murphy NC when the temperatures dip below freezing, winterizing your home is a wise precaution to prevent damage. This article will guide you when you are ready to get the water operational, it is quite easy to get it going. Follow these simples steps:

  1. If you drained your water heater, DO NOT TURN POWER ON to it just yet. If you do, you’ll likely burn out your elements.
  2. Turn your faucets on with both the hot and cold water running.
  3. Turn the main water line valve to your house back to the “On” position very S…L…O…W…L…Y. This will allow water to gradually flow into your home’s plumbing. If you do it too fast, you can knock loose grit or debris in your pipes which will glow to faucets etc. and potentially clog them up.
  4. You’ll hear a bunch of sputtering, spitting, and crazy noises as the air escapes the pipes. This is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about.
  5. Let this go on till you no longer hear the sputtering of the air in the pipes and it sounds like normal, running water.
  6. Turn off all your faucets.
  7. If you drained your water heater, go to a faucet and turn the HOT water back on and allow it to run till you are certain there’s no air left. Once you are, turn power back on to your water heater. This is typically done by flipping the breaker in your power panel and/or by plugging in the pull switch above the water heater.
  8. Go through and flush your commodes and you’re good to go! To be double safe, turn off all faucets and listed for any running water to ensure you don’t have a leak. If you do, turn off your water main and call a plumber. Feel free to use our Gotta Guy List for recommended plumbers if you do not have one you prefer.

Read our article on how to winterize your home and protect your well from freezing temperatures.

 Call The Poltrock Team – REMAX of Murphy NC – – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team

Cheaply Winterize your House and Save It from Winter Damage of Freezing Pipes, Water Intrusion, and More

It looks like old man winter is here to stay here in Murphy NC! Freezing temperatures can pose a threat that puts your house in danger of bursting pipes, flooding basements, and very expensive damages. Fortunately, you can take simple precautions to winterize your house that reduces the potential of these hazards to almost nothing. For less than $10 in supplies, you can have peace of mind that your house is safe from winter’s grip.

Here are the tips we recommend:

  • Take garden hoses off your exterior hose bibs. These are notorious to freeze and burst the pipes behind your wall which can be a real nightmare to repair!
  • Turn off the main water main coming in to your house. Usually the valve to do so is located in your crawlspace/basement or at the end of your driveway. They can be a myriad of locations, but this is the most important “to do” in preventing damage. If you have one located OUTSIDE of your house, this is the most important one to turn off.
  • Turn on the hot and cold water on all your faucets and tub/showers. This will drain water pressure off your plumbing system. Leave them open.
  • RV AntifreezePurchase 2-3 gallons of pink RV antifreeze from any auto parts store or big box retailer. Pour 1-2 cups in every sink, tub, and shower so it fills your drain traps. This does double duty – 1) prevents remaining water from freezing. 2) RV antifreeze doesn’t evaporate like water so when you come back to your house, you won’t smell septic/sewer gasses that releases when traps dry out.
  • Flush all your commodes till they can’t flush any more. Pour 2 cups of pink RV antifreeze in the back reservoir tank and 2-3 cups in the toilet bowl of each commode.
  • Leave your heat set on 50-60 degrees. In the event power goes out, this provides a buffer in your house before it drops to below freezing. Also open cabinet doors under sinks to let the warm air get to the pipes.

Slightly more advanced techniques for added security (if you want):

  • Water heaters store a LOT of water and you certainly do not want that to freeze. You either need to leave the power to it on so the water stays hot or drain it. Draining it is more work but ensures it will not freeze and flushes out of any sediment that may have accumulated. Draining requires the water main to be off and a garden hose. FIRST, turn the power to it off at the breaker panel. If you do not, you’ll burn out the elements. SECOND, connect the garden hose to the drain at the bottom of your water heater. You’ll want to run the garden hose outside or to a drain in your sink or tub. To open the valve, you’ll need a flat head screw driver and/or a small wrench. Turn it to the left and open it completely. Make certain a couple faucets are open to allow air to fill the void. When the water finishes draining, close the valve by turning it to the right.
  • Plumbers use air to blow out pipes and get all the water out. You can do this yourself with a compressor and an attachment that can screw on to a shower head or sink. Open faucets etc individually to blow out the water in that line. This is easily done with two people – one to put air in the system and the other to go through the house opening faucets. Be sure to have the air pressure on your compressor turned down to 60-80 lbs.

Want the security of all this without having to do it yourself? No problem!! Go to our Gotta Guy list of Recommended Contractors, scroll to Plumbers, and call any of them to winterize your house for you. Then, you know it is done right! It generally costs a couple hundred bucks and often the plumber will offer to un-winterize your house at no additional cost.

I will also be writing tips on how to save your well from freezing temperatures and how to un-winterize your house. I hope this helps and keeps your house safe! We’re here for you and your real estate needs, so be certain to contact us or call today!

 Call The Poltrock Team – REMAX of Murphy NC – – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team

Frozen Water Pipes Lead to Frustration! How to Avoid (and fix!) your problems in cold weather

As I sit here and write this, I know for sure that I am going to have to walk out in the nine degree weather this morning to face the crisp, cold air to thaw out my water pipes. Of course, I’m sure I’m not the only fortunate person to have to do this. Sad thing is, I know better! Here are some quick and easy tips on how to *keep* your water pipes from freezing whether your in Murphy, North Carolina or anywhere else.

Preventative care is one of the first steps. If you have a well (which is the norm here), make sure it is properly insulated. Many people use insulated fake rocks to cover their well and protect it from the elements. Don’t forget you need more than that! Wrap it in insulation around the casing and pipes. Also, it’s not a bad idea to install a light bulb in with the well to help keep it warm and above freezing. Be safe with this! Be sure its properly installed so not to start a fire. The US Forest Service (and your neighbors!) doesn’t appreciate fires! Also, make sure there’s no gaps between the ground and your well house/covering. This is a prime spot for the cold air to sneak in. You want it well insulated just like you would your own house.

If you’re like me, you’ve already passed the preventative maintenance part – my pipes are frozen! If you can, wait till the temperature warms up and let it work itself out. Be careful! You may need to turn your water main off so pipes that may have burst don’t give you personal waterfall in your house! If you don’t have the luxury of waiting, get out there and defrost! Common household items work well – hair dryer, small space heaters, and heating pads will work wonders. Spend some time out there and get it done. Make sure to thoroughly check for leaks once you have water – you don’t want to damage your house.

Good luck out there! Stay warm and if you need additional help – call a plumber! We have our recommended plumbers by clicking here on our Gotta Guy List. Check them out! 🙂


John and Jessica Poltrock – Real Estate in the Mountains of Murphy North Carolina – Homes and Land for Sale – – (877) 837-3002 – Demand The POLTROCK TEAM!


*Recommendations are given as a convenience to you. We cannot guarantee the work of these contractors. We advise you do your own research and select a plumber you feel will meet your needs.