With freezing temperatures reaching from the Northern States to the Deep South this winter, it’s important to protect your home from the cold. That includes guarding against the potentially catastrophic damage that can result from frozen and burst pipes. Plumbing is at risk of freezing whenever the outside temperature reaches 20 °F or below, especially if the pipes are uninsulated. Here are some steps to keep your pipes flowing safely this winter.
- Keep your thermostat at a consistent temperature throughout the day and night.
- If you will be out of town during cold weather, set the thermostat no lower than 55 °F.
- Keep your garage door closed, especially if there are water lines located inside.
- Open cabinets and rooms that contain plumbing to ensure the warm air can reach all the pipes, but be sure to keep dangerous household chemicals out of children’s reach.
- If you can’t keep some of your pipes safely heated during periods of extreme cold, turn on the fixtures they feed to a slow trickle to keep water moving and help prevent freezing.
- Know the location of your plumbing shutoff valves and water main should you need to close them if a leak occurs.
The indoor plumbing most susceptible to freezing is often found in basements, crawl spaces, attics, garages, exterior walls and even kitchen cabinets. Keeping your pipes safe may drive up your heating bill a bit, but it’s a small price to pay not to worry about faucets freezing dry or an expensive damage bill from burst pipes. Good luck, and stay warm!