The frigid air outside is no joke. I take back all of those times it was 30 degrees out and I complained about how cold it was. These double digit subzero temperatures are a whole new ballgame – and an extremely dangerous one.
Here are some tips to prevent your pipes from freezing
1. Locate and mark the main water cutoff valve for your home. This cutoff valve is usually found near where the waterline comes into your house. Damage from running water can be minimized if you can turn off this valve quickly.
2. Know what areas of your home, such as basements, crawl spaces, unheated rooms and outside walls, are most vulnerable to freezing.
3. Eliminate drafts. Check around the home for areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas and take measures to prevent the flow of cold air in these areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated. A hot water supply line can freeze just as a cold water supply line can if water is not running through the pipe and the water temperature becomes cold.
4. Protect your pipes and water meter. Wrap exposed pipes with insulation or use electrical heat tracing wire; newspaper or fabric might also work. For outside meters, keep the lid to the meter pit closed tightly and let any snow that falls cover it. Snow acts as insulation, so don’t disturb it.
5. Make sure the waterline to outside faucets is turned off and the line is drained. Consider wrapping or insulating your water pipes, especially those pipes near outside walls, under the house or in the attic. Insulation supplies are available at local home improvement or hardware stores.
6. Allow a small trickle of water to run overnight to keep pipes from freezing. The cost of the extra water is low compared to the cost to repair a broken pipe.
7. Open cabinet doors to expose pipes to warmer room temperatures to help keep them from freezing.
If Your Pipes Do Freeze
1. Shut off the water immediately. Don’t attempt to thaw frozen pipes unless the water is shut off. Freezing can often cause unseen cracks in pipes or joints.
2. Never try to thaw it with an open flame or torch. You can use a hair dryer or portable heater, but always be careful of the potential for electric shock in and around standing water.
3. Apply heat to the frozen pipe by warming the air around it, or by applying heat directly to a pipe. Never try to thaw it with an open flame or torch. You can use a hair dryer, space heater or hot water, but always be careful of the potential for electric shock in and around standing water. Be sure not to leave space heaters unattended, and avoid the use of kerosene heaters or open flames.
4. Once the pipes have thawed, turn the water back on slowly and check for cracks and leaks.
5. If you have cracks or leaks, you’ll definitely want to contact a certified plumber to resolve the issue with the pipes.
6. If you sustain water damage from leaking pipes, give as a call and we can handle all of your water damage and property restoration needs.
ReNew Services Group is a property damage restoration company located in Indianapolis, IN. Serving all of Central Indiana for the past 2 decades, we are a leader in water damage clean-up and restoration. We are the Super Service Award Winnings from Angie’s List, A+ Rated with the Better Business Bureau (and complaint-free), and the FC Tucker Home Services Best in Class Award Winner. For your frozen pipe water damage cleanup, or other property damage restoration needs, send us an email using the form on this page or call us 24/7/365 at 317-577-7868.