When temperatures drop below freezing, the chances of your pipes freezing and bursting are eminent. At the highest risk of freezing are pipes in unheated interior spaces, such as the basement, attic, or garage, and those running against exterior walls. Freezing and bursting pipes are a common plumbing problem property owners experience during wintertime. The good news is that you can take preventative measures to reduce the risk of frozen water pipes when the temperatures plummet.
At Mr. Rooter Plumbing, we’ve put together a number of tips to prevent frozen pipes and ward off water damage when temperatures drop.
Inspect your home for any cracks, gaps, or openings that could let in cold exterior air. Check around places where pipes run through exterior and interior walls, around electrical wiring, windows and door frames, sill plates, and dryer vents. This helps keep warm air contained and prevents cold air from getting into your home. Use caulk or spray foam insulation to seal the cracks, gaps, or openings. Keeping the garage door closed can also keep warm air contained in your house and prevent freezing air from getting in.
Pipe insulation is an effective way to prevent frozen pipes. Consider insulating pipes located in unheated spaces like the basement, attic, and garage. The pipes can be fitted with fiberglass sleeves or foam rubber to provide a buffer against subzero temperatures. This method is fairly inexpensive and effective for preventing frozen pipes. Wrapping short sections of pipes in electrical heating tape can also help prevent freezing. If you need help with pipe insulation or pipe replacement, reach out to Mr. Rooter Plumbing.
Pipes are often located in cabinets. To prevent burst pipes, periodically open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors so that the heat from the rest of the house can circulate beneath the cabinets and keep the pipes warm.
Another effective way to keep your pipes from freezing is to allow faucets fed by exposed piping to trickle just a bit. The constant flow of water through the pipes relieves pressure buildup, thereby keeping your pipes from freezing.
Even though the Department of Energy advises homeowners to adjust their thermostats during cold weather to save on energy bills, that recommendation doesn’t apply when the temperature drops below freezing. It’s advisable to keep your thermostat set to the same temperature to keep your pipes warm even when the temperatures plummet. If you plan to be away from home during the winter, set your thermostat to at least 55 ?.
Sometimes a bitter cold snap can lead to burst pipes despite your best efforts to winterize your pipes. If your pipes are frozen and you need an experienced plumber to thaw them, call Mr. Rooter Plumbing to help you out. The professional plumbers at Mr. Rooter Plumbing can help you with everything from pipe insulation and thawing frozen pipes to pipe repair and pipe replacement.