Avoid Frozen Pipes
As winter weather enters northwest Iowa, it’s important that homeowners take steps to prevent expensive plumbing problems and water damage. Sub-zero temperatures that extend days or weeks at a time can wreak havoc on the pipes leading to and from your home or business. Even a tiny crack in a pipe can spew hundreds of gallons of water causing flooding, damage to your furnace, and serious structural damage. It also presents an immediate potential for mold. As the thermostat plunges further towards zero, the following tips will help you avoid unpleasant surprises that may come from broken water pipes.
Tips to help prevent pipes from freezing
- Insulate pipes located in the attic and crawl spaces using pipe insulation, even if the climate where you live is unlikely to have hard freeze conditions. You can also wrap pipes in heat tape or heat cables with a thermostat control. The best pipe insulation for your situation will depend on your home. Always install according to the manufacturer’s directions.
- Disconnect, drain, and store your hoses. Close any shut-off valves that supply outdoor hose bibs and open the faucet outside to drain the line. Keep it open throughout the winter to allow space for any water that remains in the pipe to expand. Consider using faucet covers throughout the colder months for extra protection against frozen pipes. Drain water from any sprinkler supply lines following the manufacturer’s directions.
- Turn up the heat. Set home thermostats above 55 degrees during cold weather.
- Open vanity and cabinet doors so warm air can reach the pipes under sinks.
- Keep the garage door closed.
- Drip cold water in the farthest faucet from your main valve. Moving water keeps pipes from freezing.
- Prevent drafts. Maintain a consistent temperature indoors by preventing drafts. Seal cracks and openings around windows and doors by using sealants or caulk.
The first step you should take if you suspect you have frozen pipes is turn off the water supply to that section of plumbing. That will relieve water pressure from your water supply lines. Call a professional plumber. Plumbers are trained, have the experience, and proper equipment to solve a frozen pipe issue. Once your plumbing issue is resolved you will need to clean up any standing water. Since a fast response to a water call lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces cost, call SERVPRO of Spencer & Iowa Great Lakes. Our team of professionals are here for you 24/7. We have the training and experience to restore your property quickly and properly.