As we enter the coldest months of the year here in Ohio, it’s time to start winter-proofing your home. Winter-proofing will help you risk your risk of water damage. One of the most common things that causes water damage during the winter months is freezing pipes. So it’s important to have a plan to prevent your pipes from freezing, but also that you know what to do if they do. Here’s how to prevent flooding from frozen pipes this winter.
How To Keep Pipes From Freezing
The best way to prevent flooding from frozen pipes is to keep them from freezing. It’s a good idea before any really cold weather to work with a plumber to protect your pipes. However, if you’re handy here are a couple of options:
Insulate: Pipe insulation is an insulating material that wraps around the pipes. It acts like a blanket to help protect the pipes from freezing. It’s best to wrap the pipes that are in exposed areas like basements, crawl spaces, or attics.
Seal: Inspect all your pipes and look for any cracks that may let in cold air. You’ll want to apply a sealant or caulking to these areas. By preventing cold air from entering, you’ll reduce the risk of your pipes freezing.
Disconnect: Disconnect any hoses or exterior water outlets. If you have an older faucet, make sure that all the water is drained out of it when you disconnect it. You can also wrap any external faucets in faucet covers.
Open And Drip: One of the easiest ways to prevent your pipes from freezing is to let your faucets drip. The water running will help prevent any freezing. It’s also good to keep your cabinets open in your laundry, bath, and kitchen, or anywhere else in your house with water.
These strategies will help prevent any freezing, but they don’t always stop it.
What To Do If Your Pipes Freeze
Even with a lot of due diligence pipes can freeze because the weather gets so cold in Ohio. Extreme cold can also last for days and weeks. If you notice that your water is not coming out of a faucet, it may be because of a frozen pipe. If that happens, follow the line of the pipe to find the area where it is frozen. If it’s frozen, you will need to work to get it heated back up quickly. There’s a couple of things that you may have around the house to unfreeze it including space heaters, heating pads, and hair dryers. Just do not use any extreme heat like a torch or heat gun. You’ll use these tools to unfreeze your pipes and in most cases, they’ll operate as normally once warmed up.
Unfortunately, sometimes we don’t get to our pipes soon enough and they burst and cause flooding. In those cases, Dry Patrol is on the case. We’ll not only clean up all the water damage, but we’ll also help you put strategies in place to avoid water damage from frozen pipes next year. Give us a call at anytime, day or night. We’ll be happy to help.