Today’s snow is the first sign of the season that winter is on our doorstep. Cold winter temperatures can lead to frozen pipes that not only disrupt daily life, they can also be expensive to repair. Pipes in your home can burst when water expands as it freezes. Combined with expanding water and extreme pressure, pipes do not have the strength to hold in the liquid. Generally pipes that are exposed to outdoor temperatures freeze more readily, such as hose bibs, swimming pool lines and water sprinkler lines. Pipes that run along exterior walls in the home with minimal insulation tend to freeze easier, too. Read on for some helpful hints.
You can take precautions to prevent frozen pipes in your home before the temperature drops outside and during frigid months of the year with the following precautions:
- Insulate pipes in unheated interior areas such as crawl spaces and attics.
- Wrap pipes in heat tape or thermostatically-controlled heat cables.
- Open cabinet doors to expose pipes to warm air.
- Seal any leaks with caulk or insulation that may allow cold air to ventilate the pipes.
- Disconnect outdoor items such as hoses and faucets.
- Shut off these items completely using an indoor valve and allow the excess water to drain out.
- Do not use antifreeze on these items as it is environmentally harmful.
- Trickle a little water out of your faucets periodically to keep water moving within the pipes.
- Keep your garage door closed if there is a water supply located outside.
- Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during the day and night. If you lower the temperature of your home at night, you are running the risk of freezing your pipes, even though your heating bills may be a bit higher.
- Do not set your thermostat lower than 55° F when going on vacation. Ask someone to periodically check the temperature in your home while you are away.
We’re here to help make sure you’re covered for all of life’s mishaps. To learn about the ways we can help you protect your home, contact Penny Hanley & Howley Insurance today.
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