Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Baby, it's Cold Out$ide!

5 tips that can prevent your pipes from freezing

Another winter storm advisory with extremely cold temperatures is heading our way and we are expecting the high to be 3 degrees tomorrow in Kentucky

As you know, when water freezes, it expands. If water freezes in a pipe, it will expand in the same way. If it expands too much, the pipe will burst, water will flow and serious damage will occur. This can happen whether your pipes are copper or plastic.

The three causes of frozen pipes are: poor insulation, a quick drop in temperature and your thermostat is set too low. Be aware that any time the tempfrozen pipeserature dips to 32 degrees, unprotected pipes are vulnerable to freezing, especially when you factor in the wind chill.

Here are 5 tips that can prevent your pipes from freezing:

Tip 1: Before the cold hits, insulate pipes in attics, crawl spaces and outside walls. Pipe insulation is available in foam sleeves or fiberglass.

Tip 2: When the weather is freezing, leave kitchen or bathroom cabinets doors open to allow the warm air to protect the pipes. This is especially important if the pipes are located on an outside wall.

Tip 3: Allow a small stream of water to flow from the faucet through pipes that are vulnerable to freezing.

Tip 4: When the temperature is below freezing, keep thermostats at the same temperature at night as during the day. You may try to conserve energy by reducing your thermostat at night, however, this could cause your pipes to freeze.

Tip 5: Every responsible person in the household should know where the main cut-off valve is located in your home. Tag it.

If you turn on your faucet and the water doesn't flow, the water in your pipes may already be frozen. You may be able to thaw out your pipe with a hair dryer, however for safety purposes, call a plumber.

If your pipes have already burst, turn the water off at the main shut-off valve, leave the water faucets turned on and call a plumber.

Stay warm and call the Home-Comfort experts if you have plumbing or heating issues. 

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