Tips to Prevent Frozen Pipe
Posted: Dec 22, 2016
The safety measures have to be followed to prevent the pipes from freezing and also you should call a professional in case you have any problem in thawing the pipes yourself.
During winters when the temperature drops below freezing point, there’s always a potential that the water in some pipes may freeze. Frozen water pipes in unheated basements and crawl spaces can be messy and expensive to fix.
Water expands as it freezes. This expansion puts extreme pressure on both metal or plastic pipes. Pipes that freeze most frequently are those which are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor water faucets, swimming pool supply lines, and water supply pipes in an unheated interior. Also, pipes that run against exterior walls that have a very little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.
There are a number of reasons that cause frozen pipes. The most common ones are:
a) Quick drop in temperature
b) Poor insulation
c) Thermostats set too low
Luckily, there are a lot of steps that you can take to prevent the frozen pipes during winters:
- Exposed pipes are more prone to freezing. So, check the insulation of pipes in your home’s crawl spaces, attic, and outside walls.
- Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes. In severe cold, even a tiny opening can cause a pipe to freeze.
- Install a heat trace cable to avoid a cold pipe from freezing. You can call
- Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night. This would prevent your pipes from freezing.
- You can warm up the pipe close to the faucet by a hair dryer, working toward the coldest section in case the pipe freezes.
- Completely open the cold water faucet nearest to the frozen pipe. This relieves the pressure and reduces the chance of breakage of the pipes.
- Keep the heat in with a rough-and-ready barrier built with foam board. These are very easy to cut. Faced or unfaced foam board will work for a temporary set up.
- Open the cabinet doors to allow heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
- Shut off and drain the water system in case you are going out for a few days.
You must act quickly once you are aware that a pipe is frozen. You can attempt to thaw the pipe yourself or you can contact a licensed Plumber In Los Gatos to do the work for you. It is essential to thaw the pipe as soon as possible because it can burst and may cause extensive damage to your property.
Author is a professional Plumber in Los Gatos with several years of experience in plumbing.