Having one of your plumbing pipes burst in the middle of winter is literally the last thing you need right now! While you can't prevent freezing temperatures from happening, you can take measures to prevent your pipes from freezing. Luckily, doing so is a walk in the park.
Follow these 5 simple tips to prevent pipes from freezing and bursting in very cold weather:
- Drain Outside Pipes – Shut off the water valves to any pipes that lead outside to external faucets. Proceed by going outside and opening up the faucets to let any remaining water drip out until there is nothing left inside. Afterward, leave the faucets open and cover them with insulated covers.
- Wrap It Up – If there are any plumbing pipes that are exposed in spaces that aren't heated, wrap them in insulation. Common areas include basements, garages, crawl spaces, and attics. Place the foam insulation over the exposed piping and wrap it tightly in duct tape for a secure fit.
- Doors Wide Open – It's possible for pipes inside of your home to burst. On nights where the temperatures are below freezing (under 32 degrees Fahrenheit), open all of the sink cabinets in your bathrooms and kitchen. This will allow the heat from your home to warm the pipes underneath the sink. Before you go to bed, open each sink cabinet for the night.
- Pressure Relief – A buildup of pressure behind frozen water is what causes pipes to burst. However, you can relieve this pressure by simply turning your faucets on. This may sound counter-intuitive, but a steady flow of water (even if it's a slow drip) can prevent this pressure from building up. This isn't very water-conscious, but it's better than paying for new plumbing and water damage restoration.
- Shut It Down – When you plan to leave your home for a few days in the winter, it might be wise to shut your water off completely. Rather than coming home to a burst pipe, simply keep the water out of the pipes. Head to the main shutoff valve, switch it off, and run a few of the fixtures to remove any excess water.
If you've ever had a burst pipe before, you know how much of a hassle (and fortune) it is to repair. When you need to replace a burst pipe or have your plumbing repaired, contact Lancaster Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at (717) 207-9952.