Outdoor Plumbing in St. Louis – Maplewood Plumbing
When it comes to maintaining or improving household plumbing, indoor fixtures such as toilets and tubs come to mind immediately. But what about outdoor plumbing? Those pipes, vents, and faucets are also worthy of our attention, particularly because their exposure to harsh weather conditions can cause plumbing problems.
Outdoor Residential Plumbing Systems
Landscape drains, outdoor sewer clean outs, sprinkler systems, gutter systems and downspouts, spigots and hoses are all part of the outdoor plumbing system of your St. Louis home. And all of these are part of the system that requires outdoor plumbing services such as drain cleaning. But with proper maintenance, you’re much more likely to avoid emergency plumbing services!
There are several different types of landscape or yard drains. These basins catch excess water and redirect it away from the foundation of your home. Channel drains prevent puddles around unground pools, keep water from flowing into your home or garage and collect pooling water on walkways, sidewalks and pavers. Channel drains are installed in the pavement and redirect water to a drainage system.
Outdoor Sewer Clean Out
These drain clean outs allow your plumber to access the main sewer line. This drain clean out is located either in the front yard or the back yard of your St. Louis home. You’ve probably noticed their caps sticking out above the ground while you’re cutting the lawn. These are important because your plumber can run a sewer camera through the clean out and down into your main sewer drain to find a blockage or other plumbing problem. In fact, even when the clog happens inside your indoor plumbing, such as the kitchen sink, your plumber can find the issue by snaking a camera into your outdoor plumbing system.
If your home has a sprinkler or irrigation system, this is also considered part of your outdoor plumbing. This system delivers fresh water to your yard and landscaping in much the same way that it delivers fresh water to your kitchen and bathrooms for drinking from the tap.
Gutters and Downspouts
Your gutter system and downspouts are an important part of your home’s outdoor plumbing system, carrying rainwater off your roof and away from the foundation of your home. You can learn more about how your gutter system works and how to maintain it here.
Spigots and Hoses
Outdoor spigots, also called hose bibs, are small outdoor faucets that make it easy for homeowners to use water outside for things like washing cars and watering plants and landscaping. Some homeowners install additional hose bibs for an outdoor kitchen, outdoor sink, or outdoor shower. These spigots are attached to a home’s indoor water supply and allow water to flow from inside the home to outside.
Here are a few tips for keeping outdoor plumbing in St. Louis up to par throughout all four St. Louis seasons.
Spring Outdoor Plumbing Tips
Every Spring, check your outdoor faucets (hose bibbs) for leaks and replace the washers in your garden hoses. Check the water pressure, as well. There is a pressure regulator between your home and the main water line that functions to keep the high-pressure water supply from bursting into your home and causing damage. You can purchase a gauge at any hardware or home improvement store to attach to your outdoor spigot. The standard for residential plumbing water pressure is 40-45 pounds per square inch (psi) and should never exceed 60 psi. This is also a good time of year to check your sprinkler system (if you have one). Checking them each season will help you spot any problems before they turn into emergencies. Sprinkler heads can get clogged and sometimes will rust or become damaged and need to be replaced.
Summer Outdoor Plumbing Tips
Summer is the ideal time to check your home’s plumbing for leaks, because a long winter can negatively impact your pipes. Now is the time to take care of any plumbing issues before the cold weather comes around again. You should also check your water heater for signs of leaks or corrosion around the hardware. If your water heater is more than 10-15 years old, consider having it replaced.
Winter Outdoor Plumbing Tips
Winterize your outdoor pipes before temperatures plummet. Disconnect garden hoses, turn off the water to outdoor faucets, and drain the remaining water. Remember to leave the faucet handle turned on during winter months.
- Be sure to winterize outdoor showers, garden sinks, barbeque sinks, and fountains.
- If pipes freeze and crack during cold weather, you may not know it until temperatures warm up again. Learn where the main water shut-off valve is in your home so you can respond quickly in that situation.
- If the top of your plumbing stack vent is exposed, consider adding a cap to prevent leaves, sticks, and rodents from dropping into your system and creating a clog.
- Keep an eye on your outdoor drains: they should be free of dirt, leaves, and other debris.
- If you experience recurring slow drains or clogs, consider calling in a licensed professional for a video inspection of your sewer lines.
Fall Outdoor Plumbing Tips
Autumn in St. Louis is a favorite season for residents – the colors are gorgeous, and the mild weather makes being outside tolerable after a humid summer! But remember that in St. Louis, the seasons change unexpectedly, and cold weather can arrive before you know it. So, prepare your home’s outdoor plumbing in the fall before freezing temperatures hit. The first thing to do is disconnect any hoses attached to your outdoor hose bibs and store them in a warm, dry location. If you have interior shut-off valves for the outside faucets, close them and drain the water from outside lines now.
Cover your outdoor faucets with Styrofoam insulation to add another level of protection. This is also a good time to clean your gutters and downspouts before winter weather arrives.
Maplewood Plumbing and Sewer has been taking care of outdoor plumbing for homes across St. Louis City and St. Louis County for more than 30 years. Our family-owned business prides itself on our solid reputation in the community. Give us a call and see for yourself why our loyal customers won’t use anyone else!
We offer a one-year warranty on all parts and labor excluding washers.