4 Tips to Keep Your Water Pipes from Freezing

With cold temperatures, come possible dangers. These may be things like frostbite, slipping on ice, and ultimately frozen pipes. This freezing can create pressure to build up in the pipe which can ultimately cause the pipe to bust. If this happens when no one is around, this can cause serious flooding which in turn only causes more problems. (You need only to worry about the water pipes. Drain pipes only carry wastewater, so they are not pressurized, and are usually made of plastic). However, prevention is possible even in a #PolarVortex like the one we are having this week (-40 wind chill, no thank you!).

Tip #1 Keep your heat on

It is important that you keep your thermostat to at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This will allow the water to stay above its freezing point and keep warm air circulating throughout the walls and attic, where these pipes are most often located.

Tip #2 Drip your faucets

We actually just had our furnace go out last week and it is incredible how well this tip works. Allowing the faucet to drip releases the pressure in the pipe. Since the pressure is not building in the pipe, this will prevent the pipe from bursting. If you have a sink serviced by a cold and hot water pipe (like a bathroom sink), turn both knobs to a slight drip. If your sink is serviced by one water pipe (like a kitchen sink), turn the water to warm and let it drip.

Tip #3 Keep cabinet doors open

In the areas where the pipes are located in the cabinets, make sure to keep the cabinet doors open. This allows the heat to enter more easily and keep the pipe warm. Also, try to keep the doors in the house open so the heat can travel more freely.

Tip #4 Add insulation

Add insulation to the attics, walls, basements, and crawl spaces. These areas are the most common when it comes to where water pipes may be located. This insulation will help maintain heat and not let it be lost to cracks or broken seals open to the outside.

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