You may be thinking that pipes can only get frozen during cold weather, but that’s a popular misconception. Pipes in homes with a warmer climate are even more susceptible to freezing because it’s poorly insulated against the cold. At the highest chance of freezing are those pipes stationed in unheated areas in the home, like the attic or garage.
If you already suspect that your pipes are frozen, it’s best to use a professional drainage service to avoid plumbing damage in your home.
However, there are simple steps to ensure this doesn’t happen. Carefully follow these tips, and you’ll thank us later.
Turn On The Faucet
Your pipes won’t freeze if the water is running; keep that in mind.
If you are scared of your pipes freezing, open up the faucet connected to the exposed pipes just a little bit to relieve pressure. Running water through the pipe, whether hot, cold, or warm, will help melt any ice formation before it gets bigger.
For your pipes to burst, it means there’s excess pressure between the blockage and the faucet.
Use Heating Tapes
The same way a blanket works to keep you from freezing to your bones during winter is how heating tapes work with pipes. Heating tapes are especially useful for small sections of pipes that you can easily access. You can opt for the “self-regulating heating pipes” that control how much heat is needed and it turns off automatically when the temperature of the pipes is above freezing. Or, you can use heat pipes that require electricity to function – you turn it on manually when you feel your pipes are about to freeze and turn it off when required.
Alternatively, you can use a more inexpensive option to “insulate your pipes.” You can coat the exterior pipes of your home using foam rubber or fibreglass sleeves to protect them from frigid temperatures. However, it doesn’t supply heat to the pipes, so your pipes might still be at risk of freezing if the pipes are exposed to freezing temperatures for a long time.
Keep Kitchen and Cabinet Doors Open
When you leave the kitchen doors open, warm air circulates the pipes to prevent them from freezing. Also, you can go as far as keeping all interior doors open, as it would increase heat circulation around the entire house. However, you should keep away any harmful chemicals from the kitchen cabinets if you have kids in your home.
Close Up Cracks and Holes
Cracked holes in the walls can increase the temperature of your home, especially holes close to the cabinet. They can make an already cold cabinet compartment even colder and up until the point of freezing the pipes.
You should use spray foam insulation to cover up the cracks on the wall, and if possible, cover it from both ends – interior and exterior.
Thoroughly lookout for holes in dryer vents or electrical wiring, and use caulk to protect your pipes from the cold.
Adjust the Thermostat To A Constant Temperature
Yes, you might get away with reducing the thermostat at night or when you’re not home during summer, but not in this case. Of course, keeping your thermostat at a fixed temperature can cause a hike in your utility bill, but trust us, that’s a fair price to pay as against fixing a burst pipe.
If you won’t be around for a while during the cold weather, you can set your thermostat to a consistent temperature of no lower than 55℉. So, we have put down a few tricks to prevent your pipes from freezing during the cold weather. But how do you know when you have a frozen pipe?
Signs That Indicate Frozen Pipes
- When you notice a foul stench coming from your faucet, it could be an indication that your pipes are frozen.
- If you notice the pipes in the exterior part of your home are covered in frost, there’s a high chance your pipes are already frozen.
- Are you turning on the water in your kitchen sink, and little to no water drops? Then your pipes are frozen. If you don’t know how to thaw a frozen pipe, then it’s best to give us a call at FS Drainage and have our team of experts do what they know how to do best.
How Can I Fix A Frozen Pipe Myself?
There’s no doubt that your kitchen pipes will most likely freeze during the winter if you don’t take precautionary measures. When water freezes in a pipe, it expands, causing it to burst, leading to serious property damage.
Before thawing a frozen pipe, you need to be 100% certain that the pipes are still intact because if the pipes are already bursted, the water will come out with a huge force and flood your home. So, if you are uncertain, call a plumbing company – FS Drainage.
If you’re sure you are just dealing with a frozen pipe, take the following steps;
- When heating the pipe so the ice can melt, turn the faucet on. Keeping water running through the pipe will help the ice melt off faster.
- Heat the frozen section of the pipe using a hairdryer electric heating pad, or you can just wrap a cloth already dipped in hot water around it. When using an electric heating pad, ensure that it isn’t close to any inflammable material.
- Keep applying the heat until the water pressure is restored. Also, it may be best to do a quick inspection to be sure you don’t have other frozen pipes, as that can cause other pipes to freeze as well. Lastly, call a plumbing service if the frozen area is out of your reach.
Frozen pipes are totally preventable with the right steps. You can try out one of our tricks or even all five tips simultaneously. Some may come at an extra cost, but it’s worth the hefty bill you’ll spend on repairs.