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What Time Is It? Time To Winterize Your Big Bear Home!

It is getting to be that time of year again when the weather in Big Bear is turning colder.  It is pretty common these days that the temperatures during the night hover near the freeze mark.  This will only increase as we head into winter.

Given that most of the people who own property in Big Bear do not actually live in Big Bear and are only able to make it up from time to time, winterizing your home now is very important.  Trust me, you do not want to take the chance of frozen pipes. The resulting damage can be in the ten’s to hundred’s of thousands of dollars, not too mention future disclosure of water damage and/or mold.

Why take the risk?

Here are several links from the local water departments that talk about the proper way to winterize your Big Bear home.

City of Big Bear Lake DWP (PDF)

Big Bear City CSD (Link)

Nearly every home in Big Bear is equipped with a stop & waste, or stop & drain valve. The primary purpose of this valve is to drain the water from the pipes of the house.  Just turning the water off at the meter is not enough.  Not only do the water companies not want you messing around with “their” meter, it will not drain the lines.  If a pipe were to burst, whatever water was still in the lines could still create damage inside the house.

If you are buying or selling a home in Big Bear, make sure the property has an operable stop & waste valve. A local home inspection will normal check to make sure it is working properly.  They are not cheap, about $400-$500 to install or replace given they have to be installed below the frost line, but they are critical.

I know of a lot home owners that think just leaving the heat at 55 degrees inside the house is enough to winterize it.  Not true. Again, this is skating on thin ice (pardon the pun).  If the heating system shuts down for some unknown reason, or if the power goes off for an extended period of time, then you are sitting with “live water wire” inside your house and chances are it will eventually flood.

What’s even more damaging is that a frozen water pipe can go unnoticed for quite some time before someone knows about it, especially for out of area owners.

So, you can see, it always makes sense to winterize your Big Bear home prior to leaving for an extended period of time.  It is very easy to do and very easy not to do.  Just like anything, after you have done it a couple times, it is a piece of cake.

There’s a lot more to know about home winterization, make sure to read the links above.

If you live out of the area, your Big Bear home is not winterized, and you cannot make it up here anytime soon, feel free to give me a call and we can talk about the best way to get it taken care of in your absence.  There are several qualified plumbers that, with access to the home, would be able to winterize it in no time.

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