Prepare Your Pipes for the Winter

winterizationThe cold temperatures, ice, and snow that accompany winter weather can cause some major inconveniences, not the least of which is the potential for plumbing issues in your home.  Below are some ways your household can be better prepared for the winter season.

  • Inspect your pipes and have any leaks repaired as soon as possible. Any water that is trapped in a pipe has the potential to turn to ice, which is surprisingly strong enough to burst the toughest of metal pipes.  To this end, you should also wrap pipes located in colder areas of your home with heat tape or pipe insulation to help keep them warm.  Burst pipes are the number one plumbing issue stemming from winter weather.
  • The fall months are the perfect time to handle any servicing needs your home has. Make sure your furnace is professionally inspected and ready to keep your house warm, and that your water heater has been drained and maintained by a licensed plumber.
  • Be sure not to neglect your outdoor plumbing and its related accessories. Detach your hoses from the spigots, completely drain them, and store them away before the first overnight freeze. You should also shut off the water supply to your outdoor faucets.  If you have sprinklers, use a can of compressed air to blow the water out of them, taking care to make sure they are completely dry before you store them.
  • Clean out your gutters. If water cannot move through them freely, the water is likely to freeze, leading to possible roof damage and unwanted water in your home.

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What can I do if I get frozen pipes?

How to Deal With Frozen Pipes


Marietta PlumberFrozen pipes can cause serious problems for a home-owner. The resulting damage can be expensive and may include water damage if the pipes burst. When water is frozen it expands. No matter what material your pipes are made out of the expanding process can possibly break the pipes. Pipes most likely to freeze are those that are outside or otherwise exposed to extreme cold temperatures.

There are way to prevent your pipes from freezing. Before the onset of winter be sure to drain your swimming pools and sprinkler water supply and drain, remove and store your outdoor hoses. Additionally, you can also consider installing products intended to insulate pipe such as pipe sleeves or or heat cables. Newspaper can be used as added insulation, but is not recommended as a long term solution.

You can take other precautions around the house such as allowing your facets to drip as running water will help to keep down the possibility of the freezing. You can open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate around the pipes. Be sure to put any hazardous cleaning materials out of the reach of children and pets. If you leave home for more than a few days, leave your thermostat set to a temperature no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

In spite of all of our best efforts the fact is that your pipes may still freeze up when you’re faced with severe cold and below freezing temperatures.

There are ways to thaw out frozen pipes, but doing it yourself could cause more problems. You may want to check other pipes throughout your home. Usually when one pipe freezes, more will follow.

Your best bet is to contact a local professional in your area who is equipped to handle the situation rather than attempting a DIY project. They will come to your home with the proper knowledge and tools to help unfreeze your pipes with minimal damage. In most cases, they can give you tips for future prevention.

Are you dealing with frozen pipes in the Marietta area? Call Pell Plumbing at (770) 499-2006 and schedule a service call right now!