Preventing Frozen Pipes
Everyone knows that water freezes once it gets below freezing. However, many people forget that this can also happen to the water that flows through their pipes. Frozen pipes cause more damage to homes in the winter than any other repair problem. Don't learn this the hard way! There are plenty of ways to spot and prevent frozen pipes before you have to call an emergency plumber.
What are the dangers of frozen pipes?
The dangers of frozen pipes include:
- damaged/ burst pipes
- extensive water damage to your home
- loss of water
These problems can cause a homeowner a lot of money. It's also important to note that most home insurance policies don't cover damage caused by frozen pipes. This is because it's an easy problem to avoid as long as you take the proper precautions.
Who's in danger of frozen pipes?
Anyone can experience frozen pipes when the temperature gets under freezing. People in typically warm climates are especially vulnerable because they won't be prepared like people who experience cold winters every year. Pipes near the exterior walls, basement, and attic of a home are the most vulnerable pipes in the home because these areas tend to get the least heat — especially if the home is not well insulated.
Are My Pipes Frozen?
Signs of frozen pipes include:
- freezing temperatures
- frost on the pipes
- no water coming out of the pipes
- bad smell coming from your faucet or drain
How can I prevent frozen pipes?
There are a number of things that you can do to keep your pipes from freezing:
- Keep the heat on.
Most pipes freeze and burst because someone left for a holiday vacation and turned the heat off to save money. While that may save you a little bit of money on your utility bill, it will not help you in the long run when you have to pay for the damage that a burst pipe did to your home. Keep your heat at about fifty degrees.
- Increase insulation in your walls, attic, and basement.
Better insulation keeps the cold from getting inside your home and reaching your pipes. It will also save you money on your utility bills!
- Cover your pipes.
There are many products to keep your pipes warm. You can put sleeves or heating tape around your pipes for this exact purpose. Unfortunately, this is expensive and difficult to do with pipes that are in walls and other hard to reach places.
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