If you live in an area where temperatures fall below the freezing point, it's important to prepare for cold weather and take proactive measures to keep your pipes from breaking.
Burst pipes are not only painful, but they are also expensive. Depending on the severity of the problem, unfreezing and repair burst pipes may result in a headache. Below, we've reviewed six recommendations to assist you keep your pipes chilled this winter.
1.Pipes with coverage
Water supply pipes are more susceptible to freezing and bursting when they're located along exterior walls or in unheated areas like your basement or attic. It's advisable to keep your pipes away from this problem by utilizing insulation.
Covering your exposed plumbing is one of the cheapest and easiest methods to prevent burst pipes. If you live in a place where freezing temperatures are only occasionally, your local hardware store will have several materials that you can use to.
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2.Insulate unheated areas
When plumbing runs through an unheated basement, attic, garage, or crawl space, the pipes don't get as much warmth as they would in a heated room or living room. Moreover, well-insulated homes can.
If you're a DIYer, you should be able to. Otherwise, you may hire a professional to do it for you. Either way, it's a cost-effective and energy-efficient way to safeguard your pipes and keep your property at an acceptable temperature.
Tent a tap running on cold days.
You may be surprised to discover that doing something as simple as running a tap can help prevent frozen pipes. However, it's one of the most effective things you can do. It doesn't take you too long to leave your tap running at full blast, but make sure you've got a good drip.
Choose the ones that is farthest away from your water source. This will help the water survive a large portion of your plumbing system, keeping it active and less likely to freeze. Similarly, if you have taps that are protected by exposed pipes, it's a good idea to keep them trickling.
4.Open bathroom and kitchen cabinet doors.
Another small (but effective) method to prevent burst pipes is to open the cabinet doors under your kitchen and bathroom sinks. By doing so, the heated air from your property will begin to circulate beneath your cabinets and warm up your pipes.
If your cabinet doors are located along an exterior wall of your residence, it's particularly important to ensure that pipes in these areas are more likely to freeze because they're closer to the cold outdoors.
5.Don't turn off your thermostat.
During a cold spell, you may be familiar with the Department of Energy's recommendation to save energy, but that guidance does not apply.
Instead, you should keep your thermostat at a constant temperature throughout the day and night. Doing this will help your pipes stay warm, making them less susceptible to freeze and burst. Besides, maintaining a stable temperature will relieve stress on your, which is particularly important during periods of extreme cold.
6.Seal leaks and flaws
This winter, the ultimate strategy to avoid burst pipes is to patch up rough areas in your house. Cold air may come in, reduce the temperature around your plumbing, and cause your pipes to burst.
The good news: it's easy to seal leaks. Start by walking around your house and looking for appropriate places where air might sneak in, including window and door frames, electrical wiring, and dryer vents. Once you've identified the problem areas, use insulation or caulk to seal them up.
The bottom line
Even if home maintenance isn't your perfect fit, you should be able to tackle all of these repairs in a single weekend. It may seem uncomfortable, but making these minor upgrades is a small effort that will prevent serious headaches and costly repairs in the future.