How to Prepare Your Pipes for Winter

Avoid Burst Pipes this Winter

How to Prepare Your Pipes for Winter

Calhoun Plumbing

August 17, 2020

As we get ready for seasonal changes and the chill of fall, it’s time to start planning for the winter months. Central Ohio has some rough winters, and the last thing you want to have to deal with is frozen pipes. Fortunately, there are preventive actions you can take now to winterize your pipes and avoid the inconvenience, damage and expense caused by them freezing and bursting in your home.

What Happens When Your Pipes Freeze?

As temperatures reach freezing levels, the water inside the pipes in your home begin to freeze. The primary sign that your pipes are frozen is when you turn your faucet on and nothing comes out. The water in your pipes turn to solid ice, which creates a ‘log-jam’ that prevents water from traveling to your faucets and appliances. The frozen water, combined with the pressure from the water main, creates pressure and expansion within your pipes that if left untreated, can cause the pipe to burst. The result is water (after it’s thawed) gushing from the break in the pipe. The water typically travels to the lowest floors in your house, like the basement. If undetected, this moisture can cause mold growth, harm your foundation and cause other types damage that will be very expensive to fix.

Tips to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Here are some tips to prevent your pipes from freezing in the winter:

  1. Keep the thermostat at a reasonable temperature. Maintaining a steady warm temperature throughout your house will help keep pipes from freezing. Open the cabinets under your kitchen sink so that the warm air can freely circulate near the pipes.
  2. Let your faucets drip. On days and nights when temperatures are predicted to plummet, let water trickle from the faucets. A small steady stream of water flowing through the pipes reduces freezing which prevents pressure from building up.
  3. Wrap your pipes. There are several solutions for insulating pipes. There are fiberglass and foam rubber sleeves to encase your pipes as well as heat tape. These remedies are helpful for small exposed areas of pipe. Focus on the pipes that run near the exterior of your home, which are more likely to be affected by extreme cold temperatures.
  4. Add insulation. For a cold winter climate like Central Ohio, you could find that extra insulation will help prevent pipes from freezing. Insulate cold areas like the attic, basement and crawlspaces. It’s a fairly easy DIY project.

If you find yourself with a broken pipe this winter, shut the water off at the main valve and call Calhoun Plumbing. We offer 24/7 emergency plumbing services and can send a licensed plumber to fix your burst pipe.

Central Ohio’s Trusted Plumbing Partner

Calhoun Plumbing has over 25 years of experience serving the plumbing needs of Central Ohio. We offer 24/7 emergency plumbing services as well as general plumbing services that include backed up sewer and drain, leak detection, excavation services, and other general plumbing services like bathroom repairs, kitchen sinks, backflow testing and more. If you are looking for a local plumbing company that you can trust and who you can call 24/7, Calhoun Plumbing is here to help.