If you live in a region where the weather gets below freezing, your plumbing pipes will be at risk of freezing. If they do freeze, they can burst. Bursting pipes can lead to major damage to your home, your furniture and your plumbing system. The advice in this article will help you to prevent your pipes from freezing and causing major problems.
Protect your inside pipes
Some of your house pipes are going to be more at risk of freezing than others. Pipes that run through exterior walls are very susceptible to freezing. Also, pipes in the basement can get extremely cold and freeze. You should wrap them with tubular insulation to help. If you don't have tubular insulation for pipes, you can use regular insulation and duct tape.
You also want to keep the water running a little in the pipes that are most at risk. For example, if you have a bathroom with pipes running through the outer wall, then you should turn the cold water on and leave it on during the freezing temps. The stream of water that comes out of the tap should be about the width of a pencil lead.
Make sure you don't allow the inside of your home to get too cold when you aren't home. Set your heater to a temperature in the mid-fifties. Also, make sure the doors to the bathrooms and laundry room are open so those rooms get the heat as well.
Protect your outside pipes
When the freezing weather comes, you should shut off your sprinklers for the season. Also, unhook your garden hose, drain all the water from it and keep it inside until the warm weather is back. If your hose freezes then it can expand and this can cause the pressure to go back into the plumbing system.
Close the shut off valve to your outside water spigots, unless they are frost-proof. Once you shut off the valve, go to the spigot and drain it until no more water comes out.
By taking a few extra precautions to help decrease your chances of having pipes freeze around your house, you will know you have done your part to protect your pluming system. Any time you do notice a problem with your plumbing, you want to make sure you call out a professional plumber (such as one from Action Plumbing & Heating) promptly so you know you are going to be able to catch problems quickly before they become bigger.