When temperatures outside drop to -5, the chances of your pipes freezing are significant. During wintertime, one of the most common causes of property damage is pipes bursting. The lines are more likely to freeze in interior spaces like your attic, garage, and basement that are not heated.
Pipes that freeze the most frequently include:
*Water pipe supply lines in unheated areas like basements and garages*Pipes that run against exterior walls without insulation.
Here are some tips to prevent pipe freezing without spending too much money or time.
1. Keep the Garage Door Closed
If you have any water supply lines in the garage that aren’t insulated, keep the garage door closed as much as possible. This will also help maintain the heat inside the house and prevent your electric bill from skyrocketing.
2. Leave the Faucets Run for a While
Letting the cold water drip from the faucet can help prevent freezing. When you’re running water–even at a trickle–the constant flow of water prevents the pipes from freezing in the first place.
As an alternative to dripping water, you can use a Circulation Pump. These specially designed pumps move hot water around your home. This will allow the lines to operate faster and limit the need to run the tap. Therefore saving you a lot of water, time, and money.
3. Keep a Steady Temperature
Try to maintain your thermostat at a comfortable temperature that works day and night. When your pipes experience a cold snap, they’re more likely to freeze. The same goes for your thermostat if you plan to leave for the winter. Leave the house’s temperature at no lower than 55° F.
4. Seal Cracks
Spend time looking over your property and seal any cracks that can let cold air through. Be meticulous in places where pipes run from inside to outside the home, like the water pipes.
5. Drain Outdoor Faucets
Be sure to close and drain any outdoor faucets. You want to protect these using faucet covers throughout the winter months. You might also want to disconnect garden hoses and shut off the water from pipes leading to any outside faucet.
What is the right Way to Thaw Frozen Pipes?
If you discover frozen pipes, inspect all the water supply lines to see any breaks or cracks. If you find broken pipes, turn off the main water supply to the house. Then, immediately call a professional plumber for assistance to prevent pipes from bursting and potentially causing damage.
You can safely thaw pipes yourself for frozen pipes without cracks or breaks. Your first step should always be opening the affected pipe’s faucet. If only a trickle of water comes out, water flow can help slowly thaw the pipe.