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How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Did you know that burst pipes are one of the most common causes of property damage during the winter months? One burst pipe can cost you thousands of dollars in damages, so it’s important to take preventive steps that keep your home safe when temperatures get below freezing. Here’s how.

1. Insulate interior pipes most vulnerable to freezing

The interior pipes most at risk of freezing and bursting are pipes in unheated areas (such as basements, attics, crawl spaces, and garages) and pipes that run inside your home’s exterior walls that have little to no insulation.

Insulating pipes in these areas is the best thing you can do to help prevent them from freezing, bursting, and costing you thousands to repair. With pipe insulation costing as little as 50 cents per linear foot, on average, this is a cost-effective way to protect your home’s vulnerable interior pipes.

You can also add insulation to attics, basements, and crawl spaces to help protect the pipes in those areas and keep your home overall better insulated against any extreme temperatures.

2. Prepare exterior pipes for the onset of cold weather

Exterior pipes, such as hose bibs, swimming pool supply lines, and sprinkler lines, are also vulnerable to freezing and bursting. Before the onset of below-freezing temperatures set in, it’s important to drain water from any hoses, sprinkler lines, and swimming pool supply lines. Also be sure to close the valves that supply outdoor hose bibs, and then open them up to allow any remaining water to drain from the hose bib.

3. Let faucets drip during extremely cold temperatures

When it’s below freezing outside, allowing water to drip from interior faucets that are served by exposed exterior pipes can help prevent those pipes from freezing and bursting.

4. Open cabinet doors

Keeping your bathroom and kitchen cabinet doors open, even slightly, when the temperatures are freezing outside will allow warm air from within your home to better circulate around those interior pipes.

5. Keep your home’s thermostat on even while you’re away

If you’re going to be away from home during extremely cold weather, be sure to leave the heat on (set to a temperature no lower than 55 degrees) to help prevent your home’s interior pipes from freezing and bursting.

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