Do you worry about getting frozen pipes? If you do, we don’t blame you! After all, these can potentially cause damage to your home if they burst, or leave you without water. When you live in the freezing and unpredictable weather of Delaware winters, it can be hard to predict when the snow will come and freeze your pipes.
Instead of worrying about your pipes, though, do something to prevent the problem. Here are some simple steps you can take to protect the pipes in your house so you never have to deal with a frozen pipe again! And If you find yourself unfortunately faced with frozen pipes, we have some tips to help you thaw frozen pipes safely
Find the Pipes Likely to Freeze
Pipes exposed to uninsulated air are in the most danger of freezing. These may include outdoor pipes or those used for your sprinkler system. Pipes in your attic, garage, basement, etc. are also in danger.
Once you know which pipes are most likely to freeze, insulate them. You can insulate around the individual pipe. Simply buy some pipe sleeves, slide them on the pipes or wrap them around, and they are already safer.
You can also add insulation to the uninsulated areas of your home. This may have the added benefit of lowering your heating bills all winter long!
Keep Your Heat On
Make sure your home stays at a warm temperature, even if you’re not there. Typically keeping it above 55 degrees will work, but check your insurance policy to see their recommended temperature, so you don’t get denied a claim! Use a programmable thermostat to lower temperatures while you’re gone and raise them when you come back. That way, you can still reap the benefits of lowering the thermostat without freezing your pipes or yourself!
Take Special Precautions
If there are particular pipes you’re concerned about, wrap them in heat tape. You can find this at your local hardware store. We recommend the kind that does not plug in since this can become a fire hazard. Simply wrap the tape around the sections of pipe you’re worried about, activate the heat, and leave it there all winter long.
You can also set up a space heater to blow on pipes you’re worried about. This is a major fire hazard but, done carefully, can also protect your home. You’ll want to watch it regularly and inspect the heater weekly.
If you’ve come home and discovered that it’s too late to prevent your pipes from freezing, you now have to act quickly to make sure that your pipes don’t burst or bulge.
What to Do if You Have Frozen Pipes
In reality, frozen pipes are often easy to deal with and they don’t always cause major damage to your home. Here’s what you need to know in case your pipes freeze.
Find Your Frozen Pipe
You’ll know the pipes are frozen because one or more of your faucets will stop working. Turn the water off, then try to find the frozen pipe. You’ll want to look anywhere pipes are exposed to outside air without insulation. This can include attics, basements, garages, etc. The pipe will likely have condensation or even ice around the frozen part.
Decide Whether to Thaw or Wait
Most pipes will thaw on their own as the weather warms up. If it’s getting warmer soon, it may not be worth unfreezing the pipe manually. Instead, just wait. You will want to watch the pipe to see if it leaks after it thaws. If it does, then it’s time to replace that section of pipe.
If you need the pipe unfrozen quickly or it’s not thawing on its own, then it’s probably time to manually thaw it.
How to Unfreeze Frozen Pipes
You can turn up the heat in your house or set up a space heater near the pipe. Aim the heater at the pipe but keep it several feet from it to avoid inadvertent damage. You can also purchase heat tape. This either plugs in or is self-heating. You wrap it around the frozen pipe, start the heating process, and wait.
Working With Frozen Pipes Underground
If you suspect a frozen pipe underground, it’s time to call in a plumber. At Core24 Services, we have the expertise you need on your side when these pipes freeze. We’ll find the frozen section, then determine the best way to thaw it for you. Before you know it, your frozen pipe problem will be a thing of the past!
Call Core24 Services whenever you have questions about frozen pipes!