Before temperatures dip below freezing, it is smart to winterize your home to prevent cracked pipes. After all, cracked and leaking pipes are a leading cause of water damage in homes. Because water can damage your home in as little as 24 hours, it is in your best interest to take serious precautions to prevent leaks this winter. Here are tips for keeping your pipes from cracking this winter.
Seal Cracks and Leaks with Caulk to Prevent Cracked Pipes
Pipes run throughout your home. This means that they are at the mercy of the temperature around them. One of the best ways to keep freezing air from creeping in is to seal up any leaks. Look for leaks not only near pipes, but in your attic or basement, around windows, dryer vents, and electrical wiring.
Let Faucets Drip During a Deep Freeze
No one likes to waste water, but when the temperature dips extremely low, you should let faucets drip. This helps to ensure that the pressure in your pipes remains low. Extremely high pressure in pipes can lead to ruptured pipes.
Keep Doors Inside Your House Open
Keep the doors to various rooms in your house open during the winter to help prevent pipes from freezing and bursting. Sealed-off rooms, particularly on lower levels can become very cold, increasing the likelihood of cracks developing in your pipes. Keep the interior doors in your home open to allow for warm air to circulate throughout your home.
Disconnect Exterior Water Hoses
There’s no reason to keep your hoses connected during the winter, so disconnect them. Any residual water left in them is at risk of freezing during the winter. Frozen water in your hose can back up, putting extreme pressure on your pipes.
Insulating pipes is inexpensive and easy. Simply head to a local home improvement or hardware store to pick up foam pipe insulation. Wrap the foam around the pipes to prevent them from being exposed to frigid temperatures.
Open Kitchen and Bathroom Cabinet Doors
Pipes run beneath sinks and behind walls in kitchens and bathrooms. Open the cabinets housing these pipes to ensure that they are exposed to the warmer air circulating through your home.
Close Your Garage Door
Although you want interior doors and cabinets left open during extremely chilly winter weather, the opposite is true of your garage. Keep it closed at all times to prevent cracked pipes in your garage.
Tips for Thawing a Frozen Pipe
If you turn on a faucet during the winter, and the water only drips out, the pipe has probably frozen. To thaw the pipe, continue to let the faucet run. The running water will help to melt the ice in the pipe. You should also try to heat the pipe safely. A space heater can help, so long as the area is free from flammable materials. Or you can use an electric heating pad. In emergencies, even using a hairdryer to warm the pipe can help. If you discover one frozen pipe, be sure to check your other faucets and follow the same steps.
Schedule Emergency Water Damage Restoration Today
Despite your best efforts, cracked pipes in the winter can and do happen. At the first sign of water damage, contact ProKleen. ProKleen provides emergency water damage restoration throughout Southern Oregon 24/7. Using state-of-the-art extraction equipment, we can remove water from your home quickly and safely. We will then immediately begin drying and deodorizing areas that were damaged by water. Contact us today by calling 541-857-1818 or sending us a message online.