Winter Is On The Way - Keep Your Pipes From Freezing To Prevent Water Damage

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No one wants an excessive amount of water in their home. Unfortunately, if you do not take the proper precautions during cold winter months, this can happen due to frozen and busted pipes and water lines. Knowing how to prevent this common problem, as well as what to do if it happens, may keep your home free from flooding. This will help prevent structural damage and also keep your home becoming a breeding ground for mold and mildew.

When Do Pipes Freeze?

Most people don't think to pay attention to their pipes when the weatherman simply predicts that a cold snap will only last a few days. Unfortunately, they should. Even a brief cold snap is enough to freeze their pipes if the weather gets cold enough.

Water can begin to freeze anytime the temperature reaches 32 degrees or below. While you do not usually have to worry about your pipes freezing at 32 degrees, you do need to begin to worry if the forecast is predicted to drop to  20 degrees or below. If your pipes are exposed, such as those underneath a mobile home, and are not insulated, they may even freeze at slightly higher temperatures. 

What Pipes Are At Risk Of Freezing?

Pipes that most commonly freeze are normally located in unheated basements and crawl spaces. Unfortunately, if the temperatures go low enough any pipe that is exposed to the cold air for an extended period of time is at risk. These include:

  • Pipes located on your exterior walls of your home
  • Pipes outside of your home
  • Pipes and plumbing in your garage
  • Plumbing or spigots connected to garden hoses

What Will A Frozen Pipe Cost You?

The cost of a frozen pipe is dependent on many different variables. Some of these variables are the location of the pipe, as well as how much water damage occurred, and how much cleanup could be required. Simply getting a plumber in to fix your pipe may run you anywhere from $50 to $600.

This pricing will be determined by the area you live, whether your pipe is an an easily accessible space, and how much damage the plumber will have to repair. Your price will also be higher if the job being done is on an emergency basis versus on a non-emergency basis. Unfortunately, your costs will usually not end with the cost of your plumber. 

If your home has sustained substantial water damage, your total clean up costs can range from $5,000 - $70,000, with the average home insurance claim being approximately $15,000. Even once you file a claim, you will be responsible for your deductible and any costs that your insurance company may not cover due to the terms and conditions of your specific policy.

What Can You Do To Prevent Your Pipes From Freezing?

In the case of frozen pipes, prevention is the most important key. Always ensure that all the pipes in your home have proper insulation. You may want to consider using heat tape, or other similar products on those that are exposed.

In addition to this, if there is going to be really low temperatures take the following precautions:

  • Keep a trickle of water running through your pipes. The pressure from this trickle will keep your pipe from freezing. It is recommended that you choose a faucet that is the farthest from where your water enters your home.
  • Remove and drain any outdoor hoses, swimming pool lines, sprinkler systems, and anything else that may contain water. Cover your outside faucets.
  • Keep outside doors, including those in your garage closed.
  • Open cabinet doors to expose your interior pipes to the warmth of your home.
  • Make sure that you maintain some type of heat in your home, especially if you will be away for an extended amount of time during the winter.

If you are not successful in keeping your pipes from freezing and bursting, and you sustain water damage as a result, make sure you call a professional water damage restoration company, such as Flagship Restoration, to begin your clean up as quickly as possible. They are not only trained on how to clean up the water, but on how to restore your home back to the level that it should be in order to provide a safe and secure environment for you and your family.

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