Winter sounds attractive to many of us. It’s time to have fun in the snow. Unfortunately, it isn’t the case for your home if you can’t protect the water pipes from freezing. Since frigid temperatures cause water to freeze, and when they do, they expand. So, the risk of having burst pipes increases during winter. Eventually, you might end up paying thousands on water damage.
So, today, we plan to talk about this setback and recommend a few ways you could implement to avoid frozen pipes.
How to Prevent Frozen Pipes in Winter?
We’ve discussed it in two parts:
- Preventative Measures in Advance of Winter
- Preventative Measures During Winter
Preventative Measures in Advance of Winter
1. Keeping the Buried Pipes Below Frosting Level
Ensure that the underground water supply line is installed below the local frosting level. To facilitate this, you could take free expert advice or contact the local Supply & Sewerage Authority to pay a visit to your home.
2. Relocation of Outdoor Pipes
Consider moving outside pipes away from cold areas into the home before winter comes. Replacing exposed faucets with frosting proof models could be another lasting solution to the problem. And, we suggest spending a few dollars now to save a lot later on a burst pipe.
3. Inspect Water Supply Lines
Check for leakage, corrosion or other evidence of damages and get them repaired ahead of winter. To withstand extreme weather, consider replacing damaged pipes with durable pipes covered in braided stainless steel.
4. Seal Cracks and Openings
Inspect the walls, doors, windows, basement, or crawl space for any cracks or openings that could let cold air coming into your home. Once you find any, seal those as soon as possible. Caulk around any holes or cracks to seal and use a foam padding to cover any ventilated crawl spaces. This will not only protect your pipes from freezing wind, but it will also embrace warm air into the home and improve insulation.
5. Disconnect Watering Hoses from Outside Spigot
A frozen outside hose can get back up into the spigot to reach the interior faucets and causes a rupture. So, as part of routine winter maintenance, you should remove, drain, and store outdoor hoses before the temperature hits the freezing point.
6. Use a ReadyTemp Water Circulator Device
When connected to a faucet supply line, this water circulating device can monitor the internal water temperature at a pre-set level. Plug into a wall socket and open the faucet to check how hot the water is pouring out and adjust according to your demand. This machine is worth every penny if you don’t want to sacrifice winter relieve.
Read: How to keep pipes from freezing without heat
Preventative Measures During Winter
1. Keep the Thermostat Set to a Consistent Temperature
Sudden changes in the temperature might results in burst pipes as water density reacts to this fluctuation differently. So, to maintain a steady home environment, we suggest setting the heat on the thermostat as consistent as possible, preferably at 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This will keep the temperature well over the freezing point and avoid ice forming up in water pipes.
2. Turn on The Faucets to Drip
When you anticipate a snowy night, let those faucets running at a slow constant drip. Even a small flow of water creates frictions that produce energy within the water line, so it takes longer to form ice blockages.
3. Keep Cabinets and Interior Doors Open
Water lines located in the bathroom and kitchen cabinets are vulnerable to winter to some extent. So, one way to avoid freezing these pipes is to keep the doors and cabinets open. It means that insulated air can circulate around these pipes and that the same level of heat is distributed evenly across the room.
4. Keep Garage Doors Open
If water lines pass through your garage, keep the door closed and do not allow cold air to blow in and lower the overall temperature.
5. Switch the Water Line off and Drain it Before Holidays
While preparing a winter holiday, ensure the water is turned off at the shut-off valve and drain the remaining water by opening all the faucets. So, coming back home, you are safe not to witness a watery disaster.
At what temperature do pipes freeze? And, How long can a house go without heat before pipes freeze?
The threshold temperature for freezing pipes is around 20 degrees Fahrenheit, according to researchers from the Building Research Council at the University of Illinois. And, at that temperature, it can take up to 6 hours for an unheated area to freeze the pipes.
Will pipes freeze at 32 degrees?
There is no simple answer. 32 degrees Fahrenheit is the freezing temperature for water. Yet indoor pipes are a bit sheltered from extreme weather. So, just because it’s 32 degrees outside does not mean all the pipes will reach the freezing point.
How do you keep outside pipes from freezing?
Leave at least one of the faucets to drip to allow the water to travel through the outside pipes. Also, wrapping foam insulation will make freezing less likely.
Should you run hot or cold water to keep pipes from freezing?
Running hot or cold water to drip can’t keep pipes from freezing, yet it can delay the process.
Will shutting off water keep pipes from freezing?
Yes. Shutting off the water supply valve and drain the inside water will help pipes from freezing during cold months.
Should I leave faucets on if pipes are frozen?
Definitely! This technique helps lower the pressure inside supply line and avoid having burst water pipe.
What is the minimum temperature to keep pipes from freezing?
There is no rule of thumb. In general, any temperature above 55 degrees Fahrenheit is acceptable to keep your pipes safe.
You’re well-read to act upon with a plan to prevent frozen pipes in winter. Although it’s not as easy as it seems to protect the entire home plumbing system from freezing, doing things in advance will make it easier if you have to face any misfortune in those months. Well, in case you come up with such a condition, knowing a few thawing techniques will help you overcome the problem.
Lastly, if this article served your purpose today, we’d love to hear your feedback in the comment section below.
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- How to keep pipes from freezing in crawl space
- How to Prepare Your Home’s Concrete Surfaces for Winter
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