Don’t Fear Frozen Pipes This Winter

It’s the middle of November and we’re still experiencing 80 degree temperatures, but we won’t for long. Winter is on the way…

We may not live in the coldest of climates, but those bone-cold days can be brutal when they come! With these freezing temperatures comes the danger of frozen and burst plumbing…and costly damages. Follow the tips below to prevent frozen pipes!

Freezing Facts:

  • 11-20% of homeowner’s insurance claims are due to water damage from freezing pipes. (The average cost of this damage is $7,307.)
  • 250,000 homes experience frozen and/or burst pipes in the U.S.
  • Water expands to 10% of its size when it freezes.

What Causes Frozen Pipes?

Pressure – The typical cause of frozen pipes is pressure from the unfrozen water between the closed faucet and the ice.

Poor insulation – Especially if your house was built before the 1960’s (when insulation quality started improving) you could be at risk of frozen pipes.

Bends in the pipe – The expansion of the frozen area can be trapped by bends in the pipe.

Old pipes – Debris tends to build up in old pipes, therefore making them more likely to freeze.

How Do You Prevent Frozen Pipes?

  • Insulate (with foam) any pipes that are in colder areas of your home,
  • Replace old plumbing.
  • Re-route any pipes that are exposed to the cold.
  • Seal any insulation gaps near plumbing.
  • Turn off any valves for your outdoor water supply. Make sure the tap is empty and shut it tightly.

If you expect freezing temperatures…

  • Allow warm air to circulate to your home’s coldest areas, especially if your plumbing is vulnerable in that area. For example, opening cabinets under sinks.
  • You may want to set your heating system to maintain a warmer temperature overnight.
  • Open faucet taps to allow a slow drip of water.

If you’re leaving town…

  • Have someone monitor you home (both inside and out).
  • Turn off your hot water tank.
  • Consider shutting the main water valve to your home and draining the plumbing.
  • Keep your heat set to a normal temperature.

Worth The Call.

In addition to the prevention tips above, you should schedule a Fall Clean & Check from The Bosworth Company to ensure your home’s systems are ready for the cold weather ahead. Of course, no matter what you do to prevent frozen pipes, they can still happen. If they do, contact The Bosworth Company immediately. We will act fast to restore your pipes and return your home back to normal. We’re worth the call. Always.