How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Author: D16 December 23, 2014

We’re already into the freezing temperatures and the winter season. We may not be able to prevent damage that comes from natural disasters, but frozen pipes are one type of damage that we can prevent. We’ve seen the water damage frozen pipes can cause time and time again. Here’s our top three causes along with solutions to hopefully help save you the mess, money, and aggravation.

CAUSE: Quick drop in temperature.
SOLUTION: Disconnect all garden hoses and drain water from the pipes leading to outside faucets. For inside faucets let them run a small, pencil size stream (especially overnight).

Cold thermometer

CAUSE: Not enough insulation.
SOLUTION: Insulate the pipes in your crawl space, attic, or near outside walls. The more you use, the better.

Roll of fiberglass insulation material, isolated on white background.

CAUSE: Thermostat set too low.
SOLUTION: Set the thermostat in your house no lower than 55 before you leave.

Adjusting and setting thermostat to save energy

Why They Burst
Ice expanding against the wall of the pipes, of course! Right?

Actually, no. That’s not why. It’s the water pressure. The continued freezing and expansion inside the pipe causes water pressure to increase and that is what leads to the pipe’s failure. See, you learn something new every day! Here’s another fact: a mere ⅛” split in a pipe can send about 250 gallons of water spewing out in just one day. Whoa, that’s a lot of water.

Hopefully our experience in some of the most common causes of frozen pipes bursting will help prevent you from having some serious water damage. If you have any questions or would like to speak to our water restoration team, contact us here.