Pro­tect pipes from freez­ing this win­ter

The Review - - CLASSIFIEDS -

Freez­ing pipes are a con­cern for home­own­ers who live in cold cli­mates. When tem­per­a­tures dip be­low freez­ing, the risk that pipes will freeze rises. Should a pipe burst, the dam­age that re­sults can be ex­ten­sive and costly.

Any pipe can freeze, but those that are di­rectly ex­posed to the cold are the most vul­ner­a­ble. These in­clude pipes that feed out­door hoses, swim­ming pool sup­ply lines, pipes in un­heated in­door rooms (i.e., base­ments or garages), and any pipes that run close to the out­doors through unin­su­lated walls. Wa­ter ex­pands as it freezes, and that ex­pan­sion can place pres­sure on what­ever is try­ing to con­tain it — in­clud­ing pipes.

To avoid se­ri­ous dam­age, home­own­ers need to pre­pare for the ar­rival of colder weather and be smart about how they pro­tect pipes.

• Drain wa­ter from swim­ming pools and wa­ter sprin­kler sup­ply lines prior to the on­set of cold weather. Drain wa­ter be­fore freez­ing tem­per­a­tures ar­rive, and don’t for­get to drain out­door gar­den hoses and store them in­side af­ter wa­ter­ing sea­son has come and gone.

• Close in­door wa­ter valves that feed out­door spig­ots/bibs. Open the spigot out­side to al­low wa­ter to drain out. Keep the out­side valve open so that any wa­ter that has ac­cu­mu­lated will con­tinue to drain and ex­pand out­ward with­out dam­ag­ing the pipe. An in­su­lated bib dome also can help pre­vent frozen pipes.

• Open cab­i­net doors to al­low heat to reach pipes in­side of cab­i­nets. Keep the doors open to spa­ces that may not be heated or in­su­lated as well as other ar­eas of the home so that heat can find its way in­side. Con­sider wrap­ping these pipes with an in­su­lat­ing ma­te­rial as well, such as heat tape or pipe sleeves.

• Main­tain a con­sis­tent ther­mo­stat tem­per­a­ture. En­sure the tem­per­a­ture in­side your home does not drop be­low 55 F; oth­er­wise, prob­lems can arise. Use a pro­gram­mable ther­mo­stat to keep the house com­fort­able even when you are not home. In­di­vid­u­als who are trav­el­ing should set the ther­mo­stat so that it will keep the home at the rec­om­mended tem­per­a­ture to avoid frozen pipes.

• Open one faucet. When it is very cold out­side, par­tic­u­larly at night, let wa­ter slowly drip from one faucet to pre­vent freez­ing. Choose the sink that is fur­thest from where wa­ter en­ters the house so wa­ter is flow­ing through all of the pipes to reach that faucet.

• In­crease in­su­la­tion around where pipes en­ter the house. Use in­su­lat­ing foam to seal any drafts where pipes en­ter the house from the out­doors.

Frozen pipes can­not al­ways be avoided. There­fore, it is im­por­tant that ev­ery­one in the house­hold knows how to shut off the main wa­ter valve in the event a pipe bursts. This can pre­vent ex­pen­sive dam­age to a home.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.