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How to Prevent a Frozen Pipe

icicles-from-frozen-pipesCold weather here in Wayne brings fresh flurries and cozy days curled up indoors. While cold weather is great sometimes, there are a lot of negative effects that it can have on your home—a common one is a pipe freeze. We find that many homeowners think that pipe freezes are inevitable but they’re really a nuisance that’s easily avoided. If you’d like to avoid a pipe freeze this winter, keep reading below. If you’ve already run into an issue where you have a frozen pipe in your home, make sure that you contact a plumber in Wayne, PA from our team today.

Why Do Pipes Burst

Let’s cover the bases first, to understand how to avoid a pipe freeze, you should understand why pipes even burst. Well, pipes burst because when water freezes the volume expands by about 9%. When the water in your pipe expands, it expands with force and the pressure inside can break open your pipe. It’s also possible that the break can occur when the ice forms, but it’s more likely that the breaks occur when the pressure finds a weak spot in the pipe.

Here’s What to Do…

So what can you do?

Keep Your Faucet Open

If you’re really trying to prevent a frozen pipe in your home, it’s a good idea to keep your faucets open. If you have a pipe that’s extremely susceptible to freezing, let a little water drip from the pipe throughout the night. An “extremely vulnerable” pipe is one that’s typically receiving a lot of cold air.

Make Sure Your Heat Stays On

This is the time of year where you don’t want to cut corners on your heating. Don’t choose the dead of winter to turn your heating off overnight, this is one of the easiest ways to put your pipes at risk of freezing. A good rule of thumb is to never let your home get colder than 55°F. If your home drops below this point, you’re putting yourself at risk for a pipe freeze.

Open Your Doors

You might think that your pipes in your home aren’t at as big of a risk as piping in your attics, crawlspace, or basement, but this is untrue. The pipes underneath your sink are at risk of freezing. You’d be surprised how cold the spaces behind these doors get. Make sure to open them as often as you possibly can so that they’re exposed to the heated air circulating throughout their home.

Keep Your Home Sealed

Make sure that your home is tightly sealed and well insulated. If your home isn’t sealed well, your pipes are at an even higher risk of having your pipes freeze.

Consider a Pipe Sleeve

If you have a pipe in a high-risk space, you should consider slipping a pipe sleeve, heat cable, or even something as simple as a newspaper. You’d be surprised how much protection these tools can give an expose pipe in your home.

If you have a pipe freeze in your home, make sure that you contact a professional from Murphy’s Plumbing, Heating & Conditioning. We’re a conscientious team that will make sure any of your plumbing issues are handled correctly the first time.

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