When winter sets in, frozen pipes can lead to more than just a burst. They bring along a cascade of issues, including mold and extensive water damage. To shield your home from this havoc, understanding why pipes freeze and how to prevent it is crucial.
Why Do Pipes Freeze?
Frozen pipes go beyond mere bursts. They bring about all the water-related destruction, causing damage to furniture, floors, and walls. This scenario is worsened by the expenses associated with fixing the burst pipes, addressing the damage, and executing repairs. Avoiding this catastrophe means recognizing which pipes are prone to freezing in chilly temperatures and acting to thwart this icy trouble before it strikes.
How to Prevent Freezing Pipes
Pipes situated within exterior walls are susceptible to freezing, even with minimal exposure to extended cold spells. Though modern building codes often prevent placing plumbing in these areas, many older homes still feature this setup. Shielding these pipes is crucial. Additionally, pipes exposed in unheated spaces like attics and basements are at risk, along with any plumbing on a home’s exterior.
Most building codes dictate robust insulation for exterior walls. Adequate insulation prevents freezing, minimizes heat loss, and curbs rising utility expenses. When pipes on these walls freeze, it’s frequently due to insufficient insulation. If such pipes have frozen before, upgrading the insulation becomes a priority.
Outdoor pipes can be insulated with specialized products. Preventing garden hoses from freezing is equally important; the pressure from frozen hoses can rupture indoor pipes. Disconnecting hoses and turning off the water, along with draining all pipes, is sound advice before freezing weather arrives.
Pipes in unheated areas, like crawl spaces, attics, and garages, are especially vulnerable. These can be protected with insulating devices, including tape-like products designed for extended periods of freezing temperatures.
The Significance of Prevention
Folks in areas prone to freezing temperatures should implement these precautions over extended periods. Moreover, individuals leaving these areas temporarily should take these preventive measures to avoid bursting pipes during their absence. Turning off the water and clearing drains are essential steps during this hiatus.