Eight Tips on Preventing Burst Pipes

With colder temperatures setting in, now’s the time to start thinking about one of the worst winter plumbing problems: burst pipes! A frozen and burst pipe can result in massive flooding, significant property damage and massive repair bills.

Thankfully, preventing pipe bursting is easy if you follow these helpful tips:

  • Keep water running: One of the easiest ways to prevent a burst pipe is to keep one or two faucets running slowly overnight. There’s a much lower chance of water freezing (and a pipe subsequently bursting) if there’s water constantly flowing through the line. Although it doesn’t hurt to run every faucet, focus on running those near exterior walls.
  • Leave cabinet doors open: In addition to keeping the faucets running slowly, it’s not a bad idea to open up the cabinet doors under sinks near exterior walls. Warm air is better able to circulate around pipes when the doors are open, drastically reducing the chance of a frozen pipe.
  • Direct warm air to cold areas: The worst pipe bursts often occur in basements, crawl spaces or other cold areas near a home’s exterior. One of our top home plumbing tips is to direct warm air to these areas to prevent the pipes from dropping below freezing temperatures.
  • Disconnect outdoor hoses: Take a few seconds to disconnect any outdoor hoses from your house. If water can’t drain out of the hose bib, it can freeze up and break the hose if it hasn’t been disconnected before winter sets in.
  • Use heat tape: A product called heat tape does wonders to prevent pipes from freezing up and bursting. This tape is easy to use on your own and works for both PVC and metal pipes. Talk to a professional plumber to learn where you should be using heat tape.
  • Seal air leaks: Winter is the season when many homeowners realize their house isn’t exactly airtight. You may feel a small draft near windows, doors, the dryer vent or electrical outlets. These air leaks waste energy and can contribute to frozen pipes. Seal these leaks with caulk to save money and reduce the risk of a burst pipe.
  • Turn up the thermostat: Raising the heat inside goes a long way in preventing a burst pipe. Even though your energy bill will be a bit higher if you turn the dial up, you’ll save a boatload on the cost of pipe repair.
  • Call a plumber: Our last tip for preventing pipe bursting is to bring in a professional. A pro can take a look at your plumbing and help identify any potential problem spots that could burst under the wrong conditions. Hire your plumber sooner rather than later to ensure you get a spot on their list.

Hire Grade-1 Underground today

If you need a professional to fix a burst pipe or prevent the problem from occurring in the first place, call our team at Grade-1 Underground. Contact us today to learn some more home plumbing tips or to hire our pros for 24/7 emergency repair.