Strategies That Will Help You Prevent Frozen Water Pipes Damage

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The best strategy for preventing pipes from freezing is obviously not to expose water pipes to subfreezing temperatures by placing them only in heated areas. Keeping them out of attics, crawl spaces, or nearby outside walls will keep them warm and prevent ice blockage in freezing water pipes. In a new construction project, water pipes should be properly placed from the very beginning.

In existing homes, a contractor may be able to reroute susceptible to freezing water pipes to a safer area, although it's not the most practical solution. Another way for preventing pipes from freezing is to fit vulnerable pipes with insulation sleeves or wrapping that slows the heat transfer. This insulation prevents the heat in the water to be transferred to subfreezing air and therefore prevents frozen pipes in house.

Cracks and holes in outside walls and foundations near frozen water pipes should be sealed with caulking to keep cold winds away from the pipes. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets should keep warm air inside under sinks and in adjacent outside walls.

Leaving the faucet a bit open

Letting the faucet drip just a bit during extremely cold weather can prevent frozen pipes from bursting. Although a small flow of water does not prevent frozen water pipes, it reduces the excessive pressure that builds up between the faucet and the ice blockage in frozen pipes in house. A dripping faucet will waste some water but even the smallest drip will provide pressure relief when needed. Only the vulnerable to freezing water pipes should be left with the tiny water flow.

When to suspect frozen water pipes

If you open a faucet and no water comes out, you can suspect frozen pipes in house. You should call a professional contractor to take care of the frozen water pipes and begin thawing frozen pipes. Never attempt thawing frozen pipes with an open flame; this will damage the pipe and may even start a building fire. You may use a handheld hair dryer to slowly apply heat, starting close to the faucet of the pipe with the faucet open and working toward the coldest section of the frozen water pipes.

Keeping the heat

When you're away from home for a continuous period during freezing temperatures, you should not set your thermostat below 65F. A lower temperature may save you on the heating bill but could cause a disaster if freezing weather strikes and causes freezing water pipes. Water damage restoration is much more expensive than an increased heating bill.