As winter approaches, the last thing you want are frozen pipes. The following steps will instruct you on how to avoid costly repairs this season.
1. If you have underground sprinklers make sure your system is blown out. Every year countless people forget to blow out their underground sprinkler systems and end up with a frozen vacuum breaker.
2. Remove your hoses from the faucets of your house. Leaving a hose connected allows water to stay in it, therefore, it’s more likely to freeze and break.
Tip: You might want to turn the hose bib off inside your home if you have a designated shut-off option and open it so it can drain.
3. Blow out or drain any other items such as outdoor showers, pond pumps, pools, or additional plumbing lines outside your home.
Most pipes that freeze inside a home are caused by poor installation or insulation. Pipes installed in a wall cavity with a cabinet in front of them are a common cause. The cabinet will prevent heat from flowing to the pipes thus, allowing them to freeze. At The Plumber is Here, we avoid installing pipes in outside walls where freezing temperatures occur.
4. We believe one of the best ways to avoid frozen pipes is to allow heat to reach them. Our team suggest not insulating pipes with pipe wrap because ––though it protects from the cold–– it also prevents the heat from reaching the pipes. Which is crucial to keeping the pipes from freezing.
Tip: Only insulate on the cold side. If you’re using blown insulation, try to cover the pipes with plastic, cardboard, or material that will prevent the blown insulation from getting under, or on, the warm side of the pipes.
5. Another cause of freezing pipes is turning down the heat at night. While you may be a conservative person and prefer to lower the thermostat at night or when leaving for vacation, if you don’t know where your pipes run, you might want to avoid it.
When going on vacation, or if you have a vacation home/cottage The Plumber is Here always suggest turning off the main water line in the house. We have seen many furnace failures and thousands of dollars in damage caused by a frozen pipe. Contact us for a walkthrough on how to do this as it could save you time and money.
Tip: Making sure you have a well- functioning ball valve on the system is a must.
Let us know if you have any questions or if you have run into these issues, we would love to hear if these hacks have helped!
-The Plumber is Here Team