Do you feel that chill in the air? Winter is here – and it’s wasted no time in showing us all how relentless it can be.
We all know there’s nothing worse than rolling out of bed in the morning, especially in the winter months. Not only are you surrounded by darkness, but who wants to climb out of your warm hibernation to be woken up by the bitter cold? Not me. In fact, the only thing that keeps me going during those dreadful winter mornings is the thought of a relaxing, warm shower to start my day.
I trudge over to the shower and prepare for bliss…only to realize there’s no water coming out? I paid my bill (I think), so what’s the problem here? What’s keeping me from my 10 minutes of enjoyment in an otherwise monotonous day? Turns out, my pipes didn’t want any part of this weather either – they had frozen completely, and I was out of luck.
Fortunately for you, we’re here to make sure you don’t make the mistakes I did. If you’re wondering how you can keep a pipe from freezing, we’ve got you covered. So let’s keep it chill (pun intended) and get down to business – these are the best tips to prevent water pipe freezing.
1. How to Keep a Pipe From Freezing – Stay up on your Flow!
One of the best ways to prevent pipes from freezing is to make sure things are constantly moving through it – in this case, that “thing” would be water (we know, obvious).
This is sort of a catch twenty-two – you really can’t run your faucet throughout the entire day unless you’ve got some deep pockets, and even then you’re being extremely wasteful.
You also shouldn’t let it drip – this is an urban legend that really doesn’t help to keep your pipes from freezing. In fact, the slow flow of water can actually make them freeze quicker. The solution is to open up the faucet completely every few hours and let it run for around 30 seconds. This is a good middle ground between the slow-drip method and simply running the faucet all day long.
Of course, for this to work you’ll need adequate water pressure behind it – if you don’t, it’s best to call an Arlington TX area plumber to come take a look at things.
2. Keep Pipes From Freezing – Do Your Pipes Sound Like Swamp Thing?
Alright – not THE swamp thing, but are they making a sound that’s reminiscent of it? Maybe a little bit? Slightly?
What we’re referring to here is that gurgling sound that’s coming from your pipes – a sure fire sign that your pipes are on their way to freezing up. This gurgle means that your vent pipes have become locked up due to the cold weather – but still have a chance to be saved before a total catastrophe. The earlier you catch this, the better.
In this case, your alertness isn’t really preventing the drain pipe from freezing per se, but it is contributing to drain pipe freeze protection. Early detection means you’ll be able to get an Arlington plumber out there quickly to remedy the situation. We get calls like this at All Masters all the time, and are glad to help.
3. Keep a Pipe From Freezing This Winter- Turn up the Heat!
Again, we’re not suggesting to just crank the furnace up to 75 and forget about it – unless you’re a high-roller (and we aren’t), this isn’t really feasible.
That’s not to say that heat can’t play a pivotal role in pipe freeze protection though.
The best practice here is to simply leave the heat on all the time. It’s fine to turn it down if you’re heading to work for the day, just don’t let it get below 60 and it’ll do a fine job at preventing water pipe freezing anywhere in DFW…from Richardson to Arlington.
Plenty of us like to escape to warmer climates during the cold months – if you do, DON’T shut your heat off for the time you’re gone! Leaving it low is far better than simply shutting it down. Your heating bill will be a bit more, but that’s nothing compared to the massive costs you’ll be looking at for a burst plumbing system.
4. How to Keep Your Pipes From Freezing- Seal the Deal
If you’ve been putting off sealing that annoying little crack near the faucet, now is the time to find your motivation and get it done.
There’s good reason for this – these small cracks, holes, etc. provide an easy avenue for cold air to get deep within your plumbing system. This is an express route to your pipes freezing, and is something so simple that there’s really no excuse to not take care of it.
Not sure if you’ve actually got a crack? Start feeling around the faucet area – cold spots are a dead giveaway that it’s time to pull out the old caulk gun and get to work.
5. How to Keep a Pipe From Freezing – Slow and Steady Doesn’t Win the Race
Listen, there are a few things in life that this old adage can apply to. Unfortunately, how to keep your water lines from freezing isn’t one of them.
One of the first signs of impending doom from frozen pipes is water draining slowly – everywhere. Keep an eye on your toilet, kitchen and bathroom sinks. If you’re noticing they’ve begun to drain slower than normal, there’s a good chance there’s a blockage somewhere.
Some helpful things to look out for – if you’ve got a grease trap in your home, make sure it’s cleared out. Try to stay away from washing excess food down the drain, and be mindful of the amount of paper towels and toilet paper that make their way into your system.
You can try and treat this yourself – if you need assistance from the pros, a call to an Arlington plumber should get you moving in the right direction.