Environmental Issue & Sick Building Syndrome Blog

Prevention is the Best Protection from Frozen Pipes

January 3rd, 2014 8:29 PM by Dan Howard

  • Open faucets in areas that pipes have previously frozen. Warmer water from the water system moving through pipes will not freeze as fast as standing water. 
  • · Disconnect your exterior garden hoses from outside spigots. Garden hoses hold water in the hose and the valve. The pipes connected to a hose will split with even a moderate freeze. 
  • Open the doors to vanities, kitchen sinks and other plumbing access panels. Plumbing near outside walls and over crawl spaces and garages is most likely to freeze. Adding warm room air to cold plumbing inside of sink and closet areas can only help.


  • · Cut access panels and cover with a door or vent in areas of plumbing that have previously been freezing problems. A grill installed into a wall to allow the convection of warm air can prevent freezing pipes.


  • · Add heat tapes covered with insulation to exposed pipes. The warmth of the tapes can prevent freezing. Place the heat tapes on a switch with a pilot light. Only turn on heat tapes in times of cold weather to extend the life of the tapes. Check the tapes for warmth every season because heat tapes only have a life expectancy of one to 5 year.


  • · Add insulation in the right areas. Look at both the objects you are insulating and the heat source. Do not place insulation between the heat source and the protected area. Improperly placed insulation resists the flow of heat from the inside of the home to the plumbing that is “past” the insulation.


  • Purchase a simple thermometer to leave in garages or crawl spaces. For under $25.00 you can purchase a thermometer that is designed with a remote sensor to tell you outside temperatures. Put the outside sensor in the area that may freeze in severe cold weather. Move it back outside for the rest of the year.
Posted in:General
Posted by Dan Howard on January 3rd, 2014 8:29 PM



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