Winter is right around the corner. Unfortunately, many homeowners face a common problem these days: finding that their plumbing leaks because of freezing in the winter. Unlike several other liquids, when water freezes, it expands. At this point, it occupies more space than it needed before.
As you can imagine, a pipe is an enclosed space, which is usually incapable of expanding too much. When the water within expands past the limits of the pipe, it will burst. When this happens in many parts of your home’s plumbing, you will end up with a scenario where you have many leaks all over the house. This will lead to damage to the rest of the home and has the potential to result in costly repairs.
Therefore, you should be on the lookout for ways of preventing this from happening. This is particularly important if you have just moved into a new home and are not sure whether protected from the effects of winter or not. Of course, before buying a new home, you should check it thoroughly to ensure that such details are taken care of. However, in case you find that such measures aren’t in place, some of the things you can try out to protect the plumbing from the effects of winter include:
Coating it using fiberglass
One of the most straightforward measures you can take is coating the plumbing using some fiberglass. This is easy to find in most department stores. To reduce the cost, insulate the pipes that are out of the way.
If you intend to use fiberglass, you should note that it’s a dangerous product. For this reason, you should invest in protective clothing such as a mask before using it. Alternatively, a professional plumber can handle the job for you. This not only ensures a job well done but also reduces your exposure to harmful chemicals.
Getting a heat trace cable
Heat trace cables are items made of metal with high heat conductivity. They will spread the heat from a hot part of the house to a cooler one. By running them along the length of the pipes, you can ensure the distribution of any excess heat to the lines in the crawlspace.
Most heat trace cables are easy to install, so you could try doing it on your own. However, if you have much plumbing to deal with or need to get it over with quickly and thoroughly, you should also consider getting the help of a plumber. It will cost slightly more than a DIY job but will be more effective in the end.
Using a space heater
If there is a part of the house where most of the plumbing cables are, you can heat this area using a space heater. An ordinary room heater set to a low temperature should also work well. The key is to ensure that the environment is toasty enough to prevent the water from completely freezing.
Open the cabinet doors
In most homes, the plumbing will run behind the cabinets. If the wall is not insulated correctly, these pipes could end up freezing, leading to some of the problems mentioned above. Opening the cabinets exposes them to some of the heat within the house, which reduces the risk of freezing. You can try this method if you know where the pipes run through in the walls and are sure that the wall is not insulated.
These are just some of the temporary fixes you can try out to reduce the chances of such freezing. It’s important to note that most of them are only there to stem the problem in the meantime. Once the winter is over, you should consider getting more permanent measures to reduce such freezing.
This often means consulting a high quality plumber in Scottsdale to come over and assess the plumbing for you before making suggestions on what needs to be done to protect the plumbing. Getting this done once and for all will be cheaper and will reduce the chances of dealing with plumbing issues of this nature in the future. It’s also more convenient!