The entire purpose of preventing frozen pipes is to avoid pipe bursts, which can become very expensive. Homeguide breaks down the monetary damage and states “Pipe bursting repair costs $100 to $200 per foot with most spending between $400 and $1,500 total. Water damage clean up and repair may add $1,000 to $2,000 in costs depending on the extent.” As you can see, this isn’t a cost you want to incur. With that being said, preventative maintenance and being educated on best practices is highly recommended.
We’ve compiled a list of steps that can aid in preventing this from happening.
Preventing Frozen Pipes
Keep Heating Circulating
You need to ensure that there’s always heat circulating throughout your home. Best practice is to keep your thermostat on at least 55 degrees. This is especially important when you plan on leaving your home during an extended period of time during the winter season.
Leave your Faucet Leaking
Experts recommend leaving your faucet running a little to lower the chance of the water freezing. Another benefit is avoiding pressure buildup that can lead to pipes cracking and bursting.
Keeping the pipes underneath your bathroom and kitchen sinks warm will help prevent freezing. Open your cabinets to allow heat circulation around plumbing.
Thawing Frozen Pipes
A little too late to prevent frozen pipes? Not an issue, mistakes can happen. We’ve compiled a list of ways to thaw frozen pipes to mitigate damage as much as possible.
Open the Faucet!
The first step is to open the faucet as you work on thawing the pipes. You want water to flow and help break up ice as it begins the thawing process.
If you notice a particular section of your pipe is frozen, utilize some kind of heating device (not a blowtorch or any other open flame device) to begin the thawing. Electric heating pads tend to do the trick and even hair blow-dryers.
Unfortunately, sometimes the frozen area isn’t accessible. If this is the case, calling a licensed plumber is the best solution.
Wrapping it all up
Many home expenses that pop up can be avoided with proper maintenance and attention. Frozen pipes are one of those issues. Become more cognizant of preventative maintenance on your home, and your wallet will thank you!