How to keep your pipes from freezing
It might seem like a basic topic but the truth is that frozen pipes are our number one service call. Here in the midwest, temperatures dip below freezing every winter. Couple that with plenty of older homes and you have a recipe for disaster. Here are a few tips to help with freezing pipes:
Insulate your pipes.
Using a readily available foam insulation can inexpensively help keep your pipes from freezing. Foam insulation is easy to install, simply measure, cut and wrap around the pipe.
Let your faucets drip.
Your faucets don’t need to be fully open; just let the faucet drip enough to keep water moving. This may only be necessary in the area of the house where pipes are exposed to cold air.
Open your cabinets.
Simply opening the cabinet below a sink will allow warm air to flow through and raise the temperature enough to prevent freezing. Opening internal doors in your home can also help with this.
Winterize or Leave Heat On.
If you have a secondary home or cabin, it is necessary to either winterize your pipes by removing the water prior to freezing weather or using commercially available treatments. If you use the property during the winter, keep the heat at 55 degrees, just warm enough to prevent any damage from occuring.
Use a heat tape.
In crawl spaces, allowing warm air to flow through is not an option. A heating tape might be the answer in this case. These are available at home improvement stores in the plumbing section. Many are available on the market to withstand -40 degree temperatures. These are basically wires that you run along your water pipes with a consistent low temperature that prevent freezing.
Seal Cracks and openings.
This might seem like a no brainer, but areas like crawl spaces where we can feel drafts are candidates for sealing up during the winter time. If you have vents or drafty entries into your crawl space, consider adding foam insulation or even setting bales of straw next to the opening during the winter months. It may help with cold floors as well!
We hope some of these tips help you and your family! If you do experience burst pipes, please feel free to give us a call 24/7.