Every winter, temperatures could drop below freezing and so far you have been lucky enough to not have any frozen water pipes.
What if you went on a trip to grandma’s house? Or take a vacation to a warmer climate area such as Florida or the Bahamas’?
Many homeowners don’t think about the possibility of frozen pipes and some will totally shut off the heat to their home during their leave of absence. And most Home owners, even if they take certain steps to prevent frozen water pipes will not think about the fact that any remaining water in the pipes could possibly freeze.
If you do happen to forget to take precautions such as leaving the water tricking in the faucets and leaving your heat on, you can expect your pipes to freeze and then burst once they thaw, leaving a big flooding mess.
Can you imagine dealing with flooding water, ruined drywall and carpeting during the coldest time of the year?
When I work for the Ozark Plumbing Company, I received a service call from a client named Susan. She had return to her flooding lake home after spending the winter in Florida. When she opened her front door she was greeted with ankle high stagnate water rushing past and knocking her off her feet.
The problem was that she turned off her heat and forgot to have the city shut the water off to the house. That particular winter, we had sub-zero weather, for three weeks. The warmest day was -5 degrees.
The entire house had to be strip to its studs, floor boards replaced and all the pipes had to be re-plumbed. All of this after the house was dried out and black mold removed, which cost thousands of dollars in it-self.
Frozen pipes are not only a pain, it is quite expensive too!
Here’s a few tips in-order to prevent frozen water pipes
Why leave water trickling out of your faucet during freezing weather?
The reason is water freezes at a lower temperature when it is moving, unlike still water. Consider this theory when you see lakes frozen in the winter while nearby rivers are flowing freely. If you keep a trickle of water flowing from your faucets during freezing temperatures, you will prevent your plumbing pipes from freezing.
A reason why pipes may burst in the winter time is because people who go out of town will forget to leave there heat on; even if it is just on low say about 55 degrees. Rather, they turn it completely off.
During freezing temperatures, it is possible for your pipes, to reach freezing temperatures. Even insulated homes cannot prevent pipes from freezing if the heat is turned off. The best recourse if you are leaving town with possible frozen temperatures coming is to set your thermostat on low. While your home will still be cold, it will be above freezing.
You can insulate your pipes for additional protection against freezing weather.
- Indoors: you can insulate pipes you can see in your attic or basement using a special foam or insulation wrap.
- Outdoors: any pipes exposed or vulnerable to the elements should definitely be wrapped with insulating foam (not the expanding spray on foam either). You could potentially save hundreds if not thousands of dollars in repairs with this bit of preventative maintenance.
For the ultimate protection, you can turn your water completely off to the house if your plans are going out of town for an extended period of time.
Be sure though to run the water completely out of the pipes after the main water valve to the home is shut down to make sure no remaining water freezes within the pipes.
Sometimes, despite all the precautions possible, a pipe may still freeze. You will know if this happens when it starts to leak after thawing .
Some pipes will leak slowly while others may burst from the pressure. At this point, the only thing you can do is turn the water off to the house and call a plumber.
Mister Plumber specializing in Toronto, ON sewer repair, drain cleaning, and emergency plumbing, Mister Plumber uses the latest technology to effectively troubleshoot and quickly repair any plumbing problem and offers a fast response and free estimates. Call us 416 939 1530 or fill the form for Online Free Estimate.