Expert Tips

Frozen Pipes: How to Prevent Them

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Winter in Illinois brings its own set of challenges for homeowners, and one of the most dreaded ones is dealing with frozen pipes. When temperatures plummet, the water inside pipes can freeze, expand, and potentially cause pipes to burst, leading to extensive water damage.

We’ve put together this guide to help you learn how to prevent frozen pipes and how to deal with them if you weren’t able to prevent your pipes from freezing.

Keep reading or reach out to our expert Mendota plumbers at Triple Service if you have any questions or need to schedule plumbing service!

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Insulation Is Your Friend

Start by insulating exposed pipes, especially those in vulnerable areas like attics, basements, and exterior walls. Foam pipe insulation is one of the best ways to keep your pipes from freezing. This insulation is available at any hardware store, it’s affordable and it’s easy to install. Just wrap it around your pipes, and seal it using the self-adhesive strip or duct tape.

You might also want to consider adding additional insulation in cold areas like basements or attics. If you have ongoing problems with frozen pipes, poor insulation is probably the culprit.

Temperature Control

Keep cabinet doors under sinks open, especially those against exterior walls. This allows the warm air from the rest of your home to circulate around the pipes easier, making them less likely to freeze. It’s also a good idea to let your faucets drip. Moving water doesn’t freeze as easily, and even a slow drip can keep pipes from freezing completely.

When Away

If you plan to be away during cold spells, maintain a minimum indoor temperature of 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Consider shutting off the main water supply. Then drain faucets, as well as toilets, afterwards to make sure there is no water in the system, which will help prevent your pipes from freezing.

What to Do About Frozen Pipes

Recognizing the Issue

When a faucet suddenly stops working during freezing temperatures, it might indicate a frozen pipe. Turn off the water and inspect exposed pipes, looking for condensation or ice accumulation. You’ll want to look any place where pipes are exposed to outside air without insulation. This can include attics, basements, garages, etc. 

To Thaw or Wait

Often, pipes thaw naturally as temperatures rise. If warmer weather is imminent, waiting might be a viable option. Monitor the pipe after thawing for potential leaks, which may necessitate pipe replacement.

Thawing Techniques

Increase indoor heat or use a space heater directed towards the frozen area, maintaining a safe distance to avoid damage. Heat tape is another effective method to safely thaw pipes.

Underground Issues

If you suspect a frozen underground pipe, it’s best to call professional plumbing services. Experts can locate and thaw the frozen section safely and efficiently.

Get Help from the Mendota Plumbing Experts

At Triple Service, we understand the complexities of frozen pipes. Our emergency plumbing service ensures quick assistance when dealing with burst pipes or persistent freezing issues. Whether it’s identifying frozen areas or safely thawing underground pipes, our team is equipped to handle the situation effectively.

Don’t let frozen pipes dampen your winter—reach out to Triple Service for expert guidance and assistance!