Our cold Canadian winters bring long periods of frigid temperatures and it can be as difficult for your home to handle as it is for people. One of the most common occurrences when serious winter strikes are frozen pipes, both interior and exterior. Sub-zero temperatures can cause pipes to freeze and even burst. Do you know how to tell if your pipes are frozen? How you can prevent it? How do you thaw frozen pipes? Here at Santos Water Service, we are all too familiar with these situations and although we can certainly fix them, we want to help you learn how to avoid them altogether.
Recognizing a Frozen Pipe
The most common sign of a frozen pipe is no water coming out of the faucet when turned on. Other symptoms may include a strange smell from the drain or faucet or that the water temperature is not correct. Perhaps the most obvious evidence is the visible presence of frost on the pipe itself.
Preventing Pipes from Freezing
Properly Winterize Your Home
The best way to prevent your home’s pipes from freezing is to take the necessary precautions during the fall. All water should be drained from pipes that are likely to freeze, such as swimming pools and sprinkler supply lines. You should also disconnect any hoses from the outside of your home, drain the hoses and stow them away for the season. It is also important to shut off the indoor valves that supply water to these outdoor faucets.
These are also lots of preventative measures inside your home that you can take. Seal any cracks in your walls and insulate areas around light fixtures and vents which prevents heat from escaping. Open up kitchen cabinets that have pipes running inside so that warm air can circulate around the pipes on a regular basis. Keep your thermostat at a constant temperature and maintain a minimum heat level inside your home even when you are not there.
Install Pipe Insulation
This is a simple do it yourself project that will save you money on energy bills and help to prevent your pipes from freezing. For a modest cost, you can purchase and install foam pipe insulation on your pipes. This is a fairly simple process that can easily be done with some measuring skills and patience.
What To Do If Your Pipes are Frozen
If you do find yourself with a frozen pipe it is very important you identify where the issue is and how serious the situation is. Having a frozen pipe is one thing but if the pipe has already burst that’s another ball game altogether. So, if you are wondering how to fix frozen pipes in your home keep on reading.
If you suspect that your pipe has frozen you should turn on the faucet, running water through the pipe, as cold as it might be will help melt the ice. You should also apply heat to the frozen pipe. You can use a portable electric heater, a hairdryer or wrap the pipe itself in towels soaked with hot water.
If you do have a burst pipe on your hands or the frozen pipe is not visible or accessible you should contact a licensed plumber. Santos Water Service has qualified technicians who can repair the pipes and get your system back to normal. We can help you to avoid the potential costs and damages that can result from trying to fix the issue yourself without the proper knowledge or allowing the problem to escalate. If you need assistance winterizing your pipes, or need help repairing a frozen or burst pipe Santos Water Service is only a call away.