Winter Plumbing Tips: Why Frozen Pipes Burst

At All Ways Drains we are here to help with all things plumbing and plumbing repair related. For over 15 years, we have been helping your neighbors with all of their plumbing repair needs. And, we’ve noticed that during the frigid Minnesota winters, we tend to see an increase in the need for frozen pipe repair. We’ve decided to provide you with some great information on what can cause frozen pipes, how to prevent them and what to do once you’ve got one. And we hope that when you need plumbing repair in Minneapolis, including frozen pipe repair, that you will give us a call at All Ways Drains!

Frozen Pipe Causes

Water is a powerful thing! Water expands as it freezes and this expansion puts tremendous pressure on what contains it, including metal or plastic pipes. And, no matter how strong your pipes are, expanding water can cause them to break or burst and require extensive plumbing repair.

At-Risk Pipes
Pipes that are most susceptible to freezing are those that are exposed to severe cold. For example, outdoor house bibs and water supply pipes in unheated interiors like basements, attics, garages and crawl spaces are most at-risk. Also, pipes that run against your exterior walls with little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.

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Frozen Pipe Prevention
First, remove, drain and store your outdoor hoses. Keep the outside bib open so that any water still in the pipe can expand without causing it to break. Next, check around the home for areas where water supply lines are located in unheated locations and insulate if possible. Here are a few additional precautions you can take in order to avoid the extensive plumbing repair needed in the event of a frozen pipe:
This first one is very important! Even when you go away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, setting your thermostat no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
Open your kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors in extreme cold weather to allow warm air in. But, be sure to remove any harmful household chemicals up and out of reach of children.
Keep your garage doors closed to keep the warm air in.

Thawing Frozen Pipes

In the event of a frozen pipe it is best to call the professionals, but one thing you can try is warming up the area of the frozen pipe if possible. You can try a space heater (kept away from flammable materials) or by wrapping the pipes in a warm towel. Do not use any sort of flame device to warm your pipes. And, like we mentioned, it is best to call a licensed plumber to avoid any mishaps that may in turn require more extensive plumbing repair.

Do you need more information on frozen pipes or reliable and professional plumbing repair in Minneapolis? Call All Ways Drains at 612-922-9422 or you can contact us to set up your Free Estimate.