Don’t want to fall victim to another frozen or burst pipe? That’s understandable. Waking up in the middle of the night to flooded floors isn’t exactly an experience you’ll want to relive.
Burst water pipes become a continuous source of frustration and inconvenience as long as they remain unaddressed. If you want to prevent this tragedy from occurring in the first place, here are some prevention tips to keep in mind, as shared by a trusted emergency plumber in Melbourne.
1. Don’t turn the heat off
Some homeowners attempt to cut energy costs by turning off the heat while they’re out of the house. However, doing this during winter or on really cold days could result in burst water pipes. When you allow heat to go below 55 degrees Fahrenheit, you put your pipes at high risk of freezing.
Even on days with low yet warm temperatures, make sure to keep your heat on to prevent your pipes from bursting. By keeping your home at a sensible and balanced temperature, you save yourself from the costs and headaches that come with needing plumbing repairs.
2. Open sink cabinet doors
Don’t forget that you also need to keep your hidden pipes warm. Unfortunately, many people overlook the fact that heat cannot penetrate easily through closed doors. This is why the closed cabinet doors leading to your underside sink can cause the pipes to freeze.
On cold days, make it a habit to keep sink cabinet doors open so that the heat can get to the pipes. You should also do this every evening before you hit the sack so that your pipes won’t freeze and burst while you sleep.
3. Disconnect the hose from the tap
If you have an outside tap where you connect your hose, make sure to disconnect the hose once you’re done using it. Leaving the two components connected will prevent the water from draining out of the hose bib. As a result, the water will freeze and likely break the device.
4. Keep cold air out
Remember that drafts or light wind can also freeze your pipes and cause them to burst. Seal any leaks that allow cold air inside your home, especially in the area where your pipes are. Search for air leaks around your dryer vents, electrical wiring, and pipes.
Before winter, make sure any leaks around your house get sealed off to prevent your pipes from being exposed to cold temperatures. You can use caulk or any insulation to keep cold air out. During extreme cold, even a small opening is enough to freeze a pipe.
5. Insulate or heat up outdoor pipes
If you have pipes outdoors or in any area that is not heated, you should either turn them off, insulate them, or heat them up. You can use heat cables which you can wrap around your water pipes to prevent them from getting cold and freezing over.
For pipes situated in areas without proper insulation, such as in attics or basements, you may need to add extra insulation. You can fit your pipes with fibreglass sleeves or foam rubber to lower the risk of freezing.
Insulation keeps a pipe closer to the temperature of the water inside it. However, it doesn’t add heat to the pipe and prevent freezing if exposed to extremely cold temperatures.
6. Let water run at a trickle
Finally, compared to still water, running water doesn’t freeze over as quickly. Another good trick to prevent your pipes from freezing and bursting is to leave your tap open slightly. Because the water continues to come out in a faint trickle, the pipes are prevented from freezing.
Entrust the rest to an expert
If you still discover a burst pipe in your home even after following all the preventive measures shared by the experts above, then consider hiring your trusted plumber to administer timely plumbing maintenance services. A plumbing expert knows how to handle any plumbing disaster and prevent it from occurring again. Never attempt to repair your pipes on your own, because rather than fixing them, you could end up causing more problems.
Based in South Melbourne, Blue Diamond Plumbing was founded in 1985, working on new homes, repairs and commercial contracts. Over time they have grown to become some of the best plumbers Melbourne has to offer. Since 2001 the company has specialised in Emergency Plumbing and Property Maintenance, Repairs and Renovations for homes and businesses in Melbourne and inner city suburbs. Owner Rod Diamond has over 30 years experience with emergency plumbing in Melbourne’s inner suburbs.