Three scenarios require that you pay attention to the possibility of frozen pipes. If you live in an area such as Mid-Ohio where extreme temperatures are common in winter, if you know that sub-freezing temperatures are on their way, or if you’re heading out of town, you should take some time to prepare your home and prevent frozen pipes. Spending a few minutes and dollars now will help you ward off prohibitively costly and inconvenient damage that frozen pipes can cause. Here’s what to do:
Preparing your home
Prior to any extreme temperatures, take these steps to protect your home’s pipes:
- Use pipe insulation and wrap pipes that are the most likely to freeze, including those in unconditioned areas of your home such as a basement or crawlspace.
- Alternatively, you can use thermostatically controlled cables around pipes that will heat them up.
- To keep your home’s temperature stable, seal air leaks around the exterior shell of your home to keep heated air inside, so your home’s unconditioned spaces are less subject to the temperature outdoors.
- Make sure the home’s outdoor water supply is shut off to prevent the pipes leading to the outdoors from freezing.
What to do when the weather becomes frigid
When sub-freezing temperatures arrive, here are a few more tips to protect pipes:
- Let faucets drip slowly, in order to keep the water in motion and relieve the sort of water pressure that might cause damages if the pipes do freeze and thaw.
- Maintain a consistent indoor temperature, and avoid lowering the thermostat more than a few degrees at night.
- To allow your sink’s pipes access to heated air, open up cabinet doors to faucets located on outside walls.
If you’re leaving town, don’t forget to…
- Keep the home’s temperature above 55 degrees.
- Get a neighbor to keep an eye on your home.
- Shut down the water supply to your home, and allow the water to drain out completely.
You can ensure a safer environment for your home — and prevent frozen pipes — by following a few simple steps. If you’d like help with projects around your home that will increase efficiency throughout the winter and protect your home systems, call Joe Behr Plumbing & Heating. We've been serving Mid-Ohio since 1965.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about frozen pipes and other HVAC topics, visit our website.
Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating, Inc. services the Mid-Ohio area.