As the weather gets colder and colder, there is an increased risk of frozen pipes. When the temperature falls below 20°F (-7°C), the water in your pipes is susceptible to freezing and causing an ice blockage that builds up too much pressure and can eventually burst through the pipe wall. Burst pipes due to freezing can result in extensive and expensive water damage and temporary relocation for you and your family while the repairs and renovations take place.
At Priority Plumbing & Drains, we are committed to the safety and comfort of our customers, especially during the winter, so we have put together a few tips on what you can do to avoid frozen pipes during the holiday season. Read on to learn more!
- Insulate Your Pipes
Pipes freeze when a pipe’s exterior is exposed to low temperatures, so one of the best preventative measures is to purchase fiberglass, polyethylene, or rubber insulation from your local hardware store and start wrapping pipes with a higher risk of freezing. Using heat tape before insulating the pipes adds another great layer of protection.
- Run the Faucet
The primary reason for burst pipes is frozen water building up pressure in the pipes. A good temporary solution to this problem is to run exterior wall faucets for a small, but steady, drip. Running water helps take away the risk of high pressure in the pipes. Even if the water freezes, the danger of burst pipes is significantly reduced.
- Open Cabinets On Exterior Walls
Because many pipes are hidden by doors and cabinets, they are also less likely to feel the full effect of your heating system. If you open these cabinets and doors, you can introduce more heat to your pipes.
- Insulate Your Home
Inspect your home’s exterior. If there are any cracks or holes, quickly filling them with caulking and spray foam insulation can help prevent cold air from touching your water pipes. Also, if you have one, consider sealing off your crawl space for the same reason. This process also helps save money on heating bills!
- Set the Thermostat to 55 Degrees Fahrenheit
This is a rule of thumb for all homes! Keeping your home heated to at least 55°F (13°C) will keep your home warm and will allow enough heat to circulate to colder parts of the house — specifically to the attic, basement, and exterior walls where pipes are more prone to freezing.
If you follow these tips, your pipes will definitely have a fighting chance; however, if your pipes are already frozen, preventative measures are not going to do much. Instead, we at Priority Plumbing & Drains have a few suggestions for dealing directly with frozen pipes before they burst:
If you act on these suggestions, but nothing seems to work, your pipes are still at risk of bursting and need immediate frozen pipe services by an experienced plumber. To learn more about the top plumbing services in Toronto, or to handle frozen pipes once and for all, call the plumbing professionals at Priority Plumbing & Drains today!