Burst pipes and winter go hand in hand. Why? Well when water freezes while contained, regardless of how strong the material, this expansion adds tremendous pressure – which can cause a pipe to burst. Pipes that freeze the easiest are those exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs, water sprinkler lines, and water supply lines in unheated areas of the home (crawl spaces, attics, garages, kitchen cabinets, basements).
With a few preventative measures, you can lower the risk of burst or frozen pipes in your home:
- Disconnect, drain, and store any outdoor garden hoses. Close inside valves that supply water to the outdoor hose bibs and open the outdoor bibs to let water drain out.
- Identify unheated areas of the home with exposed pipes. Wrap those you find with pipe insulation or heating tape to prevent freezing.
- If you are leaving on vacation, do not turn your heat OFF. Leave it on low, but no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Keep kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors open to allow warmer air to circulate your plumbing. (Just be sure no cleaning products or hazardous items are in reach of small children.)
- Close windows and cover any vents that are near pipes. Cold temperatures combined with wind drafts can cause pipes to freeze more frequently.
- Make sure everyone in the home knows the location of the main shutoff valve and how to close it – in an emergency.
When it comes to your plumbing and the winter season, preparation is key. Should you experience frozen pipes or a pipe burst this season – give us a call immediately. Our team has helped Pueblo homes since the fall of 1984 and will not hesitate to send help your way.