As winter rolls in, so does the risk of frozen pipes. It’s a common yet preventable issue that can cause significant inconvenience and potentially expensive repairs. This guide will arm you with essential knowledge on avoiding frozen pipes and tell you what to do if they freeze.
The first step to prevent frozen pipes is insulation. Pipes in unheated areas are particularly susceptible to freezing. Wrapping these pipes with foam insulation can help maintain their temperature and prevent freezing. Moreover, leaving your heating on a low setting, especially during extreme cold, can ward off freezing inside the pipes.
One preventative measure you can take is to regularly check your pipes throughout the winter to make sure everything is working properly. Consider investing in a small space heater, or updating your HVAC system to accommodate heat loss. Especially if your sink is situated on an exterior wall in an old house, pipes can freeze easily overnight. Check faucets early and often: the sooner you notice a problem, the easier it will be to fix.
Despite your best efforts, sometimes pipes still freeze. So, what do you do? First, identify the frozen section. Look for frost or bulges on the pipes. Once identified, shut off the main water supply to prevent any leaks once the pipe thaws.
To thaw the pipe, use a hairdryer, heat lamp, or portable space heater, ensuring you move the heat source evenly over the pipe. Do not use an open flame as this can lead to a fire hazard. Once the pipe has thawed, slowly turn the water back on and check for any leaks.
If you’re uncomfortable performing these tasks, don’t hesitate to call Legacy Plumbing, Heating and Cooling. Frozen pipes can result in costly damage if not handled correctly, so it’s often best left to the professionals. Our emergency line is available 24 hours a day for whenever you need help.
Preventing frozen pipes is all about preparation and quick action if they do freeze. Regularly inspect your pipes, insulate vulnerable areas, and understand how to safely thaw them if needed. Stay warm this winter, and keep your pipes the same!