Prevent Frozen Pipes | Plumbing Fort Worth
Winter will soon arrive, and now is the best time to prepare your plumbing in Fort Worth to prevent frozen pipes.
The Risk of Frozen Pipes
When a pipe bursts the flooding water can cause severe damage to walls, flooring, the framing and the foundation. Furthermore, it can lead to the health hazards of mold and mildew.
Your home’s plumbing in Fort Worth that is located in unheated areas of the home and outdoors are especially vulnerable to freezing cold. When it is cold enough to freeze pipes, the sign that a pipe may be frozen is the lack of water in an outlet.
Steps to Take When a Pipe is Frozen
- Turn the water main valve off.
- Open faucets to reduce the pressure until a plumber has thawed the pipe and/or repaired the burst pipe if applicable.
- If you are going to thaw the frozen pipe yourself use a blow dryer, or place a portable space heater in the room. Locate the heater at least 4 ft. from any surface, including a frozen pipe.
- Do not enter any area where water is standing and shock is possible.
- If you can safely access the homes electrical service panel without entering any water, you may shut off the electrical main circuit.
- Do not use a blowtorch or other open flame devices; they present a serious fire hazard and can damage the pipe.
- Check other water outlets to ensure there are no other frozen pipes. Plumbing in Fort Worth Most at Risk
- Outdoor hose bibs – Remove and drain outside garden hoses. Store in a garage, shed or other storage area. Close shut-off valves to faucets if available. Cover hose bibs with insulated covers.
- Swimming pool supply lines – Drain water from the water supply line after closing the shut-off valve.
- Water sprinkler lines – Drain after shutting off the water at the shut-off valve. If you have an air compressor use it to blow all water from the lines.
- Water pipes in basements, crawl spaces, attics and garages – Insulate both hot and cold water lines with pipe sleeves or UL listed heat tape or heat cable.
- Water pipes that run against exterior walls with little or no insulation – If the pipes are visible and there is room, insulate both hot and cold water lines with pipe sleeves or UL listed heat tape or heat cable. Otherwise, seal holes in the siding, loose mortar on brick or holes where cables and lines enter the home with weather proof caulking or expanding foam. The entry of cold air through cracks or openings in an outside wall where cables and/or service lines enter can result in frozen pipes.
Additional Tips to Prevent Frozen Pipes
- Water pipes have the potential to freeze and burst when the outside temperature reaches 20 °F or below. This threshold is based upon research conducted by the Building Research Council at the University of Illinois.
- When you have plumbing in Fort Worth that is prone to freezing and there is an increased risk due to cold, allow the water to run. Running water through the pipe – even at a trickle – will help prevent pipes from freezing.
- Insulate both the cold and hot water pipes where possible in the cooler areas of the home.
- Keep the garage door closed during very cold spells and insulated any hot and cold pipes contained in the garage.
- Insulate or upgrade the insulation in cooler areas of the home.
- Ensure that doors close properly and repair broken windows.
- Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around your homes plumbing in Fort Worth.
- If you will be away from home during cold weather, set the heating system to a temperature no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit. An alternate solution is to drain the water system. This eliminates the threat of frozen plumbing in Fort Worth.
- To drain the system, shut off the main water valve and turn on all water fixtures (both hot and cold lines) until the water stops running. Shut off the faucets. When returning to the house, turn on the main valve and let each fixture run until the pipes are full again and the air is discharged.
- Repair leaks now. Inspect your pipes and have all leaks repaired before winter arrives. Leaking faucets exposed to cold will freeze.
To prevent frozen pipes call a Benjamin Franklin plumber to provide repair to your plumbing in Fort Worth before cold weather threatens. Our professional licensed plumbers provide reliable plumbing services in the residential and commercial sector. We serve Fort Worth, Arlington and the surrounding areas. Benjamin Franklin Plumbing is a member of the BBB with an A+ rating.
Photo Credit: Graham Horn