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How To Deal With Frozen Pipes (Prevention & Repair)

While we’re no strangers to frigid winters here in Colorado, there’s something about extreme cold snaps that we simply never feel prepared for. While we can always hunker down and bundle ourselves up to keep warm until it passes, the effects of extreme cold weather can still be with us even when it starts to warm up.

One of the unfortunate consequences of extreme cold is damage to your water pipes. In extreme cases, they might even freeze to the point of bursting.

In this post we’re going to help you understand the ins and outs of frozen pipes. From how to identify them, how to prevent them, and what you can do if they do happen to freeze on you.

How To Identify Frozen Pipes

The good news is it’s pretty easy to tell when your pipes are frozen. If you try to turn on any of your faucets after a deep freeze and no water comes out, chances are your pipes are frozen.

If this happens, go down to your basement to check if your water is on and there’s no leaks. Be sure to take a look at your pipes and see if there are any ruptures. If there are leaks, be sure to contact your local plumber right away.

What To Do When You Have Frozen Pipes

If your pipes are frozen, but not leaking, there are several things you can do when it comes to thawing them.

  • Apply heat to frozen sections. If you have an electric heating pad (towels soaked in hot water also work), you can apply it to the pipe to slowly thaw the water inside. Never use an open flame device to thaw your pipes.

  • Be sure to keep a faucet on. Flowing water allows water to keep flowing through the pipes. Additionally, water and steam need a place to escape during the thawing process.

  • Check other pipes. Chances are, if one pipe is frozen, you’ll have a few more. Be sure to turn on other faucets in your home to check for any more frozen pipes.

Call a plumber. A professional plumber is trained and equipped to identify where the pipes are frozen and get the water flowing throughout your home. They can also snuff out any areas that may start leaking when the pipes thaw and make repair suggestions before you’re dealing with major water damage. For most homeowners, this is the best option.

How To Prevent Pipes From Freezing In The Future

While there are no foolproof methods for preventing your pipes from freezing, there are some things you can do that’ll certainly mitigate your pipe’s exposure to the cold:

  1. Be sure your hoses are disconnected and indoor valves that supply outdoor water are shut off.

  2. Keep your garage door closed as much as possible when it’s extremely cold out.

  3. Let your faucets drip slightly when temperatures are far below freezing.

  4. Never set your thermostat below 55 degrees.

Contact J.T. Plumbing Services When Your Pipes Are Frozen

We’re available around the clock to meet all your emergency plumbing needs. Whether your pipes are frozen, your water heater is out, or you’ve got a major leak, we’re here anytime you need us.