Tips to prevent water pipe from freezing

Pipe freeze during winter comes across as a headache to most homeowners. When pipes freeze, the situation may be dire and may not be as simple as enlisting the services of a plumber. Estimates suggest that an eighth-inch crack can discharge up to 250 gallons of water. causing household structural damage. flooding, and proliferation of molds. What could be worse than this? Despite being a common problem in both warm and cold climates, estimates suggest that more than a quarter-million families get affected dunng the winter period only.
When freezing occurs. not only will you lack an uninterrupted water supply around the house. you’ll also have to contend with significant leaks once the pipes thaw out
Why Pipe Freeze?
Due to its unique properties, water expands when itfreezes and puts immense pressure on whatever may be containing it. Be it plastic or copper pipes, the exposure to pressure tears or bursts them open. Pipes commonly exposed to such conditions include exposed lines such as swimming pool supply lines, unheated supply pipes in areas such as garages, attics, and basements.
Exposed pipes on exterior walls with little or no insulation. When water freezes, its molecules crystallize and assume a hexagonal shape, which takes more space than when in liquid form. Such expansion causes a pressure build-up on water trapped in between the ice and the closed faucet. Eventually, the pipe bursts under duress.
Keeping the Heat on
In case a tenant or homeowner is leaving for long periods, it’s advisable to leave the heat on to prevent pipe freeze. It may be difficult to convince one to leave the heat on mainly if they are responsible for paying the heating cost Connecting the piping ductto a pipe heating cable and maintaining a low heat temperature is vital.
Allowing the Faucet to Drip
Opening up the faucetto allow dripping eases or minimizes the build-up of pressure in case of a pipe freeze. This pressure leads to the rupturing of the water pipes. If the faucet typically gets served by both lines of cold and hot water. it’s imperative to leave both faucets to drip slightly, or if its a single-handed faucet. one should leave it at warm.
Opening up Interior Doors
Most pipes usually get located in cabinets; thus, such cabinet doors must be open to facilitate the transfer of heat from other areas of the house to the pipe-housing cabinets. It’s that one should open all their interior doors in the house to allow the even distribution of heat throughout the home.
Checking Your Thermostat
Setting your thermostat to maintain the same temperature during day and night time is essential. During the night. there is a drastic fall in temperatures; thus. the act of reducing the thermostat temperatures at night may catch you off guard by encouraging the build-up of ice.
Constant Checks
In your absence, you may ask your neighbor to periodically check your house to ensure that proper temperature is maintained to prevent pipe freeze.
Shulling off Your Drainage System
In case you intend to be away for some time. its important to exercise preventive measures such as switching off your drainage system rather than incurring exorbitant amounts in repairs. 1-lowever. the downside to this is shutting off your fire sprinkler system. which in turn may expose your property to fire risks.
Pipe Insulation
Insulating exposed pipes in your home crawl space such as basement and attics can prove to be worthwhile in the long run. Exposed pipes are susceptible to pipe freeze. hence using more insulation provides better pipe protection.
Simple acts such as draining excess water using air compressors from pipes and garden hose. Flushing one’s toilet to rid it of water in the holding tank. and closing water storage valves are essential. They ensure that no continuous water flow exists. ft is practical if you intend to stay away from home during the winter season.
Protecting your pipes is an essential step in winterizing your home. As Jack Frost continues wreaking havoc during the winter, you must ensure that he doesn’t rob you of your ability to make that hot cup of chocolate to warm yourself up.

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