The National Weather Service is forecasting freezing weather for the next couple of days; the Fern Bluff MUD encourages taking steps now to be prepared. Following a few, easy steps will help protect your property and prevent damage.
As we expect temperatures to go below 28 degrees for more than four hours, it is best to keep indoor pipes warm and insulated. Open cabinets beneath kitchen and bathroom sinks to allow warmer air to circulate around pipes. Insulate pipes located in unheated places like the garage with pipe insulation. You can also wrap pipes in heat tape or heat cables with a thermostat control. The best pipe insulation for your situation will depend on your home. Seal or caulk cracks that might let in cold air, especially places where pipes run from inside to outside the home, such as dryer vents or water pipes. Drip only if needed – When the temperatures drop below 28 degrees for more than 4 hours, it is time to let one faucet drip. The faucet you choose should be the one that is the farthest from your homeowner cut off valve. It does not need to be a running trickle — just enough to see water dripping. If you do drip your faucet, capture the water for future use.
Know the location of your water shutoff – Locate the water main shutoff valve and keep it clear of debris and obstacles. This is important in the event you experience a leak inside your property. For most homes, the property owner’s shutoff valve is on your side of the water meter at the meter box typically located at one of the front corners of the house (could be back corner if you have a corner lot). If you cannot find your shutoff valve or if it is damaged, then you should be prepared to access the District shutoff valve in the meter box. While the District discourages turning the valve in the meter box, we recognize that in the event of an emergency, all bets are off. If you don’t have a water meter valve key (which can be purchased at most hardware stores), a flathead screwdriver can help open the meter box and a wrench will turn the valve on the District side of the meter. Any questions, call us 512-238-0606.
Weatherize Exposed Pipes and Water Heaters – Insulate pipes in unheated and drafty areas, such as an attic or garage. Also check manufacturer recommendations for your tanked and tankless water heaters. Hardware and plumbing supply stores carry insulation to help keep pipes from freezing.
Outside Faucets – Remove and dewater hoses from outside faucets and wrap exposed faucets with towels or a Styrofoam insulator. Irrigation systems should be off during the winter months to help conserve water.
Preparedness Supplies – Having these supplies on hand will help you be prepared and avoid the rush at stores when the first winter storm of the season approaches.
Water meter key or flathead screwdriver and adjustable wrench – to access your meter box (if needed)
Insulation for indoor and outdoor pipes and hot water heaters
Hose bib covers for outdoor faucets
Battery powered radio and flashlight
One gallon of water per person and pet per day for seven days
Tune in for Emergency Alerts –
Sign Up for Important Email Notifications. This will ensure your email address is enrolled in the MUD’s secure database. This database is used to notify residents of important, sometimes crucial information, such as water quality alerts and emergency notifications. Electronic messages are the best, fastest and most accurate way to receive important information and the district encourages all residents to sign up and to keep email addresses current.
Sign up for Emergency Alerts at WarnCentralTexas.org
Make note: Fern Bluff MUD’s 24-Hour One-Number can be reached at (512) 238-0606, Option 1