Imagine you are leaving your snow-covered home to go on a much needed and highly anticipated vacation to a place with white, sandy beaches and warm island breezes. You might double or triple check your packing list to make sure you have all of the chargers for your mobile devices, your tooth brush and passport, but have you thought about what condition you are leaving your home in? Have you checked the weather forecast? Is there going to be another snow storm? Will the temperature drop below freezing again? Are your pipes going to freeze? You do not want to come home from a relaxing vacation to frozen and split plumbing, damage to your home and costly repairs. Here’s how to prevent your pipes from freezing this winter.

First things first, pipes splitting are not caused by ice swelling in place. It is the pressure from the unfrozen water between the ice and the closed faucet that is the primary cause of broken pipes.

How to Prevent Your Pipes from Freezing

If negative temperatures are predicted in the weather forecast while you’re away, you need to take preventative measures.

  • Ask one of your neighbors, friends or relatives to stop by your house to make sure the faucet in your kitchen or bathroom is dripping ever so slightly to reduce pressure in the pipes. A slow trickle is best, not a stream.
  • Be sure to use insulating faucet covers, rags or trash bags around your outdoor faucets.
  • Leave some of your cabinet doors under the sinks in your kitchen and bathrooms open to allow heated indoor air to circulate around the pipes.
  • Don’t forget to disconnect water hoses from faucets. Drain the hose and bring it indoors if you can.

What to Do if Your Pipes Freeze

Life happens. Even if you’re prepared for the worst, there’s always a chance something could go wrong. If your pipes do freeze and cause damage to your home, follow these guidelines.

  • Turn off the water immediately. Leaking water from thawing pipes could cause an electrical shortage.
  • Call Chapman Heating & Air Conditioning for help.
  • Do not use heat lamps or electrical appliances to thaw your pipes.
  • Contact your insurance agency if severe property damage has occurred.
  • Take as many photos of the damage as possible before repairs are made.

 

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Mother Nature can be cruel and unpredictable, so it’s always best to try and prepare for the worst, especially if you are leaving your home for a few days. Make sure you check the weather and take the proper precautions. If your pipes freeze or split this winter, call Chapman Heating & Air Conditioning right away.

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