Brrrr… It’s blustery and cold out there isn’t it??!? This cold weather snap that we are in right now through the end of the week really makes it unbearable to be outside for extended period of times. Hopefully you are able to stay inside and warm through the week of temperatures in the single digits to high teens.
Unfortunately parts of your home aren’t as luck as you are to quickly warm up, including your water pipes that either are in a crawlspace or an un-insulated area in your home. If your basement isn’t properly insulated, or your pipes are in an area that the cold easily infiltrates, then your pipes are in danger of freezing and potentially bursting. If your pipes burst, it could mead in upwards of hundreds of gallons of water pouring into your basement, inside your walls, or even drenching your floors.
Don’t think your pipes will freeze?
It doesn’t matter where you live, the cold temperatures are affecting homes in every local town from Hershey, Hummelstown, Camp Hill, Mechanicsburg, to Shippensburg. If your home’s water pipes aren’t prepared for the frigid temperatures, you are at risk of experneicing problems of frozen pipes.
Take the story that we featured from Columbus Day, 2011 where one of our customer’s had no idea that his hose faucet pipe had burst the previous winter and when he hooked the hose up that fall, he discovered that a burst pipe had soaked his laminate floors and ruined clothes and boxes in the closet near where the pipe had been.
Frozen Pipes are a Big Danger in Cold Weather
Our own Tony Demichele was interviewed by local Harrisburg Area news station abc27 a few years back about the issue of frozen and burst pipes during a cold snap in Central Pennsylvania similar to the one we are experiencing now. In the interview he explained the dangers of the cold weather on water pipes and suggested ways to avoid the situation. Watch his interview below…
How can I tell if my pipes are frozen?
If your water pressure seems to be slow, almost non-existent, or there is no water service your pipes could be beginning to freeze, or have completely frozen solid. This is one of the most common signs that your water pipes are frozen. This freezing can be in a part of your home affecting only one or two fixtures, but can also be on the main supply pipes cutting the water off to your home completely.
If you hear a loud banging or hammer that you never usually hear you may have frozen pipes. The water hammer is a sign that water pressure is building up behind the blockage or frozen area. This sound can also come when the pipe begins to thaw and water starts flowing through it again. If your pipes were frozen and have now thawed, you should have a plumber inspect the water lines for bursts and damage.
A burst pipe is the worst case result of a frozen pipe and can cause severe property damage to walls, floors, and property in your home. A pipe will burst when it can no longer take the pressure from the frozen, expanded ice inside the pipe. If your pipes burst, try to locate a water shutoff or ball valve somewhere before the burst to cut the amount of water damage down to a minimum.
Tips to Prevent Frozen Pipes
Here are a few easy tips to help prevent frozen pipes
Insulate your water pipes with a pipe insulation made from a foam material. This pipe insulation can be picked up at many local hardware stores and can save your pipes.
If it is extremely cold outside let a faucet drip a little bit to allow movement of water in your pipes. Moving water will take longer to freeze than stationary
An application of heat tape is also a way to beat the freezing of your water pipes. The heat tape can ward off potential freezing and keep a section of your pipes just warm enough to not freeze
If your pipes have frozen and you don’t have any water service, Pronto Plumbing can help thaw a section of the frozen pipes to get your water service restored. If your pipes have burst and you need to repair the section of burst pipe, call Pronto Plumbing TODAY at 717.533.1057.
What Do You Think?
Let us hear what you think of the cold temperatures or tell us about a time you had frozen pipes!