6 Ways to Prevent Frozen Pipes in Winter
Winter is that time of year when you just want to cozy up under a warm blanket and enjoy a hot cup of cocoa. But it’s also the season when your home’s plumbing can act up, especially with the troublemaker known as frozen pipes.
To give you an idea, here are six ways to keep your pipes toasty and prevent them from freezing during the winter months.
Insulate Your Pipes
Imagine your pipes as if they were water’s version of a warm, fuzzy sweater. When the temperatures drop, they need some extra coziness. You can give them this by insulating your pipes. No need to break out your toolbox; you can find foam or fiberglass pipe sleeves at your local hardware store.
Just wrap them around your pipes, securing them with tape. Make sure to insulate pipes in places that don’t get much heat, like your attic, basement, or crawl spaces.
Seal Leaks and Cracks
Your home can be a bit like a sieve for cold air, especially if it’s not well-sealed. Check for any gaps or cracks in your walls and foundation. These little openings can let icy drafts in and make it easier for your pipes to freeze. You don’t need to be a DIY pro; you can use caulk or insulation to seal them up.
This not only keeps your pipes warmer but also saves you money on your energy bills. It’s a two-for-one solution. If you’re not sure where to start or if there are bigger issues, it might be a good idea to consider professional plumbing and sewer line replacement services.
Keep a Drip of Water Flowing
It might sound odd, but running water is less likely to freeze. When it’s bitterly cold outside, leave a tiny trickle of water running from your faucets, especially those connected to pipes along outer walls. It’s a bit like a gentle stream of warmth that keeps your pipes in good spirits.
It might use a little extra water, but it’s a tiny cost to prevent the big hassle of dealing with a burst pipe.
Open Cabinet Doors
In super chilly weather, let your cabinets lend a hand – or, rather, some warmth. Open up the cabinet doors under your sinks, especially those along outside walls.
By doing this, you allow the cozy indoor air to reach your pipes, preventing them from turning into icicles.
If you live in an area with particularly harsh winters, heat tape can be your plumbing’s best friend. Think of it as a heated blanket for your pipes. You wrap this electrically powered cable around your pipes, and it delivers a gentle, consistent warmth to keep them from freezing.
Just make sure to follow the instructions carefully, so you don’t run into any safety issues. A bit of caution goes a long way in keeping your pipes snug.
Maintain a Consistent Temperature
It’s all about keeping things steady when it comes to indoor temperatures during freezing weather. While it’s tempting to turn down the heat when you’re not home to save on your energy bill, this can spell trouble for your pipes.
You don’t need to turn your home into a sauna, but don’t let it get too chilly either. If you’re planning to be away for a while, set your thermostat to at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This way, your pipes stay cozy, and you avoid waking up to a plumbing predicament.