Winters in New England can be beautiful but brutal – while there’s lots of fresh snow, your pipes are also in danger of freezing and causing serious damage to your house. Take care of your pipes properly and prevent frozen pipes by doing some simple maintenance around your home.
If frozen pipes burst, they can cause an extremely expensive home disaster. Just one burst pipe in a home can do tens of thousands of dollars of damage in minutes. Burst occur when the water cools several degrees below freezing in the pipe, causing ice to form. This can result in pressure building up in excess of 3000 PSI, which can split the pipe and lead to eventual water damage once the water is thawed.
If you suspect your pipes are in danger of freezing, call GEM immediately at 877-902-1000.
Pipes only freeze when the outside temperature is well below freezing. When the outside temperature is below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, you should begin to take precautions to prevent vulnerable pipes from freezing.
For pipes that you are exposed, such as those under sinks, you may be able to see frost accumulate on the exterior of the pipe. This is often a warning sign that the pipe is frozen.
If you turn on the faucet and no water comes out, this could be a sign that your pipe is frozen.
- Open a faucet and allow a very small trickle of cold water to run – this helps keep the water moving in your pipes and prevent a freeze
- Keep warm air circulating around your pipes. Consider opening the doors to the under-sink cabinet to promote the flow of warm air.
- Place a small fan near your pipes and cabinets to keep air moving.
- Make sure basement doors, windows, and crawl spaces are properly sealed and insulated
- Insulate your external and/or exposed pipes further to protect them from the elements
- Drain out your sprinkler system before the winter season, and make sure you disconnect and drain all outdoor hoses and water spigots
- Seal and insulate your attic, and consider replacing drafty windows and doors
- In colder areas of your home, consider installing storm windows and/or protective plastic covers