Keep us away this winter by preventing your pipes from freezing.
Cold season is here and being informed and prepared may help you to avoid the messy situation that frozen pipes can cause. Water damage, including frozen and burst pipes, on average accounts for about 22% of property insurance claims. It’s our goal to keep you from needing to call us this winter. So, here is some information on how pipes freeze and suggestions on how to keep us from showing up at your place on Christmas night.
Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes. No matter the strength of a container, expanding water can cause pipes to break. Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs and water supply pipes in unheated interior areas like basements and crawl spaces, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets. Pipes that run against exterior walls that have little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.
Here are a few steps you can take to lower the risk of water supply lines freezing and better protect your home or commercial facility.
- Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
- Check around the home or business for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.
- Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a “pipe sleeve” or installing UL-listed “heat tape,” “heat cable,” or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.
- Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
- Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
- When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe – even at a trickle – helps prevent pipes from freezing.
- Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
- If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 65° F.
We know you’re not interested in kicking off the new year with us. So, take these steps to prevent unwanted problems from happening to you this winter.
If you do experience damages to your home or commercial facility, call us right away! The sooner we’re there the more likely we can prevent further damage from occurring. We get people and businesses back on track as quick as possible, doing our best to never promise what we can’t deliver.
We believe in keeping our word. We believe in working hard to help others. We believe in delivering relief. When you need action NOW call Action ER!