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Preventing and Handling Frozen Pipes: What to Do When the Temperature Drops

Winter can be harsh, and one of the biggest challenges homeowners face is frozen pipes. When temperatures drop, water in pipes can freeze, causing the pipes to expand and even burst, leading to extensive water damage and costly repairs. But the good news is that with a few preventive measures, you can keep your pipes from freezing.

What Causes Pipes to Freeze?

The primary cause of frozen pipes is prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. Pipes that are located in unheated areas like attics, crawl spaces, and garages are more susceptible to freezing. Pipes that run along exterior walls, as well as outdoor hose bibs, are also more vulnerable to freezing temperatures.

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

The best way to prevent frozen pipes is to take preventive measures before the cold weather sets in. Here are some tips that can help:

  1. Insulate pipes: Insulating pipes can help keep the heat inside, preventing them from freezing.

  2. Seal leaks and cracks: Make sure to seal any leaks or cracks around windows and doors to keep cold air from entering your home.

  3. Keep the heat on: During extreme cold weather, keep the heat on and set it no lower than 55°F to prevent pipes from freezing.

  4. Disconnect outdoor hoses: Disconnect outdoor hoses and drain them before the cold weather sets in to prevent water from freezing in the hose and causing damage to the faucet.

What to Do if Your Pipes Freeze

Despite your best efforts, pipes may still freeze, but there are a few things you can do to help minimise the damage.

  1. Turn off the water: If you suspect a frozen pipe, turn off the water supply immediately to prevent water damage when the pipe thaws.

  2. Thaw the pipe: Thaw the frozen pipe using a hair dryer, heating pad, or hot towels. Be sure to start at the end of the pipe closest to the faucet and work your way towards the frozen area.

  3. Call a professional: If you are unable to safely thaw the pipe, or if the pipe has already burst, call a professional plumber for assistance.

In conclusion, frozen pipes can cause significant damage and costly repairs, but with the right preventive measures and quick action, you can prevent pipes from freezing and minimise the damage if they do freeze. If you’re in Tonbridge, consider hiring a professional plumber from Plumbing Angels to ensure the safety and longevity of your plumbing system during the winter months.

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