Even though it is still warm and sunny outside, homeowners need to begin thinking about the cold temperatures that are just around the corner. While the crisp morning air will be a refreshing change for many, it can also be the start of some expensive plumbing repairs if your water lines freeze. And unfortunately, if you are not aware of the problem immediately, you could also be forced to deal with costly water damage repairs.
Is A Small Crack In A Water Line A Big Issue?
If a water line in your yard or inside your home freezes enough to sustain a 1/8- inch crack in the line, it could dump 250 gallons of water into your yard or house. To better picture that amount of water, consider that the average bathtub has a capacity of 42 gallons of water. So imagine nearly six bathtubs of water pouring out of that tiny crack in your frozen but now thawing water line. So yes, most people would consider a small crack in a water line to be a big deal.
Temporary Steps To Avoiding Frozen Water Lines
If you have been caught off guard and not made the time to adequately protect your water lines from the first cold night of the year, there are a few tricks that can buy you some time.
- Let your faucets drip to keep the water in the lines moving. This temporary fix will prevent the water from freezing.
- Disconnect any outside garden hoses and wrap all of the faucets and fixtures to add insulation. Complete this process while it is warmer outside to add as much warmth as possible to prevent freezing.
- For indoor piping, open cabinet doors in the bathroom and kitchen to allow the warmer air to circulate near the pipes and prevent freezing.
- If you are not at home when winter arrives at your place, keep the furnace on to keep your home warm and prevent pipes from freezing.
- Keep all the HVAC vents in your home open to avoid cold areas that could allow pipes to freeze overnight.
Long-Term Solutions To Frozen Water Lines
A temporary fix is never what you should rely on to ensure that your home’s water lines do not freeze. Instead, invest the time and small amount of money to ensure that your pipes are protected, and you will have no concerns when winter rolls n with a vengeance.
- Insulate your crawl space, attic, basement, or other spaces that have exposed water lines in unfinished parts of the house and garage.
- Install frost-proof faucets outdoors. Traditional faucets can quickly freeze and result in a burst water line that will flood your property, or even worse, your home.
- If you have pipes in extremely cold parts of your home, you could regularly deal with cracked lines. Invest in the services of a licensed plumber to reroute the pipes to another part of your home to pervert future leaks, water damage to your home, and many sleepless nights worrying about frozen water lines.
- If your home gets very cold in the winter, consider adding more insulation to exterior walls. This simple process could save you from countless water leaks and high heating bills for many years to come.
For any concerns you might have about frozen pipes in your home or how to prevent freeze damage and water damage in your Boise home, call (208) 571-4089. The licensed plumbers at Viking Plumbing will help you winterize exterior pipes and fixtures while also protecting the water lines, fixtures, and appliances inside your home from the chilly winter temperatures.