As beautiful as winter in Maine can be, those chilly temperatures aren’t always pipe-friendly. Frozen pipes cause a series of inconvenient and expensive problems. Lack of running water due to a frozen pipe interferes with daily routine like washing dishes or showering. The second issue is the potential of burst pipes and water flood damage. There are a handful of tips to avoid frozen pipes in your home or office.
- Preparation is key: Know where your water shutoff is located in case a pipe bursts. A temporary patch kit is helpful to have at hand to seal off burst pipes while you wait for a plumber or more permanent repair.
- Turn up your thermostat: We all worry about our heating bills, but keeping the temperature too low in your home may increase your risk of frozen pipes. Temperature control is increasingly important if your home is built over an uninsulated crawl space.
- Use a Space Heater: Keep unprotected pipes above freezing by placing a space heater near them.
- Protect Exterior Faucets: To protect these faucets around your foundation, cover them with insulated foam covers and turn off the water supply in colder temperatures.
- Be mindful of your garage: Keeping it closed during the winter months will help control your pipe’s temperature.
- Don’t Let Your Faucets Drip to “Prevent” Frozen Water Lines: This can actually allow the drain pipe to freeze in many circumstances.
If your pipes do freeze, here’s what you need to know:
- Turn off the water: Locate the water main shut-off valve and be prepared beforehand to know where this is located.
- Open faucets: Opening the faucet the pipe runs to before thawing the pipe lets the water flow freely and relieve any built-up pressure.
- Heat up the frozen pipe: You can use a hair dryer or space heater to thaw frozen pipes. Start from the interior faucet and work your way towards the colder end of the pipe.
- Check for leaks: Once the pipes have thawed, turn off all the water to the faucets and check for leaks.
- Call EcoClean: Sometimes it’s best to leave it to the professionals. Although they do not perform plumbing work, they do thaw frozen drain lines. When it comes to frozen pipes, call EcoClean right away. They offer 24/7 service for emergencies such as burst or drain lines.