6 Important Things to Check in the Spring

Spring, in the midwest especially, is a time of big important changes. Flowers bloom, grass turns green, allergies may be returning for some. It also means spring cleaning – that wonderful feeling that after a winter of hiding inside and sprinting over icy parking lots to avoid your face turning numb, you must not spend hours cleaning your house and yard.

During spring cleaning, it’s typical to get the bikes down and put away the winter clothing. Maybe check the yard for work that will need to be done. One aspect of spring cleaning that should not be ignored, though it often is ignored, is your home’s plumbing.

plumibng pipe with two connectors

I mean it’s easy to see why it would be forgotten about, it’s just important pipes under your house | Image credit to Les Chatfield

As we’ve mentioned before, plumbing errors are nothing to take lightly. The smallest oversight with your home’s water supply could mean thousands and thousands of dollars worth of damage. Fortunately, the warming weather of spring gives you the perfect opportunity to make these important checks. Here are 6 important plumbing things to check in spring:


1. Check for leaks

By far the most important thing to check. Leaks can spring up in the winter if a pipe or hose gets frozen and water pressure builds up. It can also happen as a result of rust and, if the pipe has been turned off in the winter, may be hard to notice.

The best way to go about this is to run water and then inspect the plumbing infrastructure going to the fixture or appliance. If you notice any damp spots or visible leaks, you may end up saving your home from a plumbing catastrophe.


2. Check water heater

Ah the water heater. The unsung hero of our weekday mornings. Getting water hot for coffee, the shower or shaving. Staying up to date on regular maintenance is the best way to avoid losing this reliable ally.

Over the winter your water heater may have picked up some sediment as well. This could be harming your efficiency. Check with a plumber to see if you should have your water heater flushed. Also, check the intake screen located at the bottom of the heater. This will lower your energy bill!

checking the water heater

Cue the George Carlin “Redundant hot water heater” joke | Image Credit to Wonderlane


3. Check yard drain, gutters, etc…

Probably one of the most obvious ones on here. You want to make sure that any of the outside water is staying just as that – outside water. Any improper draining happening from the eave troughs or yard drains could be leaking into your home’s foundation.

The only water you want coming into your homes is through the water main. If you weren’t so lucky and do have water coming into your house, a functioning sump pump will help to keep your basement nice and dry. That’s why you’ll want to…


4. Check your sump pump

The combination of dry air and frozen ground that a midwest winter presents usually helps keep your home safe from water leaking in. This makes spring the perfect time to check the sump pump in your basement.

One of the best ways to check the efficiency and functionality of your sump pump is to pour enough water into the pit to trip the float and make the sump pump run. If the pump is working, it should remove the water. If not, check the power. If it is still not working, you may have to call a plumber.

sump pump on floor working properly

Not currently drowning in your basement? You’ve got this guy to thank | Image credit to State Farm

5. Check outdoor faucets

Any exterior bibs or faucets on your home should be checked to ensure their proper function following a dormant season. Run water through your garden hose bib and other outlets.

Additionally, check for any leaks both inside the house and outside around the bib. If your water is not running properly, call a plumber.


6. Check for hose bulges

While not terribly common, hose bulges in fixture plumbing could be a forewarning of plumbing disasters ahead. Hoses bulge when a spot softens and high pressure causes it to expand outward. There are hoses on your wash machine and under all your sinks

This expansion is followed by that section blowing out. This could be three days after you notice the bulge or three months. Either way, if any hoses have bulging spots on them in your house, call a plumber to have them replaced. Aside from water damage, these hoses could be carrying scalding hot water that could be a danger to the inhabitants of your house.


So there you have it, we hate to add to your spring cleaning list, but there are some really important things you need to be aware of with your plumbing. Performing thorough checks shouldn’t take a huge amount of time, but could be the difference between a great summer and a bad one.

If anything is ever off, call us!