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How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Water can do tremendous damage to a home when it finds its way into the wrong places. One of the worst homeowner nightmares is a frozen and burst pipe causing a major catastrophe in their home. One major insurance company reports that the average claim from a burst pipe is around $15,000. Even if you have the right insurance, avoiding such a headache and the related issues (mold and mildew, for instance) would always be preferable. Believe it or not, there are things you can do to prevent frozen pipes in your home even on the coldest of nights. Here is some information that could help you prevent frozen pipes and avoid a major nightmare.

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Which Pipes Are Most Likely to Freeze?

Knowing how to prevent frozen pipes means knowing where problems may occur. The majority of pipes that freeze do so in unconditioned or poorly insulated areas. This means basements, crawlspaces and attics are common problem areas. Additionally, hose-bibbs and under-cabinet plumbing on exterior walls are also possible areas of concern. While most pipes freeze when outside temperatures dip below 20°, your home is at risk on any below-freezing night if the proper steps aren’t taken.

Winterize Your Hose-Bibb

Perhaps the best way to prevent frozen pipes is to winterize your hose bibb or outdoor faucet. Exterior spigots are notorious for holding water near the exterior of your home, freezing, and bursting. If you haven’t already, replace your hose-bibb with a frost-free version. This will shut the water off deeper into the interior of your home, exposing it to less-frigid air. Be sure that your hose is disconnected, and cover the spigot with an insulating cap.

Insulate Pipes on Exterior Walls

Much of the plumbing in our homes is on exterior walls. This could be in the basement, in a kitchen, or in a bathroom. If you have pipes on or near exterior walls, consider buying and installing some foam or fiberglass pipe insulation. It’s a super-inexpensive way prevent frozen pipes and ensure that cold air stays away from your water lines.

Let Your Faucet Drip

Nobody wants to waste water. It seems like a bad idea from a conservation and cost perspective. Letting your faucet drip, however, will keep a small amount of water flowing through the line. This can prevent frozen pipes because flowing water (even if it’s only moving slightly) is less likely to freeze. It doesn’t need to be a steady stream to make a difference. Just turn your cold water on until the faucet drips periodically whenever temperatures are about to take a deep dive.

Turn Up the Heat

Again, turning up the heat in your home will cost you a little bit of money. It could save you a bunch, however, if it can help prevent frozen pipes in your home. Turning up your thermostat a couple of degrees (and leaving it there overnight) can add that little bit of extra warmth your plumbing needs. Space heaters can also do the trick in the right places. Just be careful about utilizing them in places where water is common, like a under a faucet.

Open Your Cabinets

You don’t have to open every cupboard in your home, but opening cabinet doors where plumbing is accessible can help their temperature rise by several degrees. This is especially true for plumbing that’s found on exterior walls.

Prevent Frozen Pipes In Your Home

It only takes a little bit of effort to make a big difference in the condition of your home’s plumbing. Not every pipe, however, is easily accessible. If you need help with any of these tasks, or already find yourself with water damage, no problem. Just hail a ProMaster “Home Repair Hero” today! You can schedule online, use the “Reach Out” form at the bottom of this page, or call 513-322-2914.

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