Follow these suggestions to prevent your water pipes from freezing in cold weather
- Your home or place of business should have a cutoff valve so that the water to the building can be cut off. Close this valve and then drain the water from the pipes inside by opening all valves and allowing the water to drain out. Once the water is drained, close the valves in anticipation of the water being turned on once the cold weather has passed. If you drain the pipes, be sure you cut off the power to the hot water heater to prevent the heating elements from burning up.
- Pipes can freeze in a building even with the heat left on! It is best to drain the pipes when the temperature is forecast to drop below the low 20s. Remember pipes on the North side of the house will freeze first.
- If you do not have a shut off valve, leave the heat on in the building and open all cabinet doors where pipes are located. This will allow the heat to enter these spaces. Such cabinets are under the sinks in the kitchen and bathrooms.
- Outside pipes or inside pipes likely to freeze (attic, crawl spaces) should be wrapped with insulation such as foam jacketing or approved heat tap insulation. If the products are unavailable, the common newspaper makes an excellent insulation. Keep the paper thick and tie it tightly around the pipes with cord.
- Exposed pipes under a house with an open foundation (like a beach house) will freeze quickly. These pipes must be wrapped or drained. The water to all secondary residences should be shut off when the home is not in use.
FROZEN AND BROKEN WATER PIPES CAN BE PREVENTED!