Winter brings families together and gift-giving, charitable acts, but it also brings cold and sleet. This is the time of year when pipes freeze which, if you're lucky, just means the water stops flowing for a short while. If you're not lucky, you're like the majority of people who deal with burst pipes as a result of freezing and it's a good idea to know which San Diego plumber you'll call before that happens! As water freezes, it expands. For marine life, that's great because it means ice has a lower density than water, which makes ice float. If ice sank, no life could exist in water through the winter. For those of us with pipes to take care of through the cold winter months, though, expanding water turning into ice can cause massive damage to pipes and end up rupturing them.
To prevent your pipes from bursting, follow a few simple preventative tips:
- Set it on drip. Flowing water doesn't freeze. It might seem wasteful to keep drains flowing, but you only need to keep it on a slow drip to keep it moving so it doesn't freeze. The water can even be captured in a bucket and set aside for watering the garden in warmer months. There's no reason to let it go to waste, so in the end, it doesn't even necessarily cost anything because the water will be put to good use anyway.
- Use a hairdryer. If you find that water has stopped flowing through pipes but you can see that the pipe hasn't yet burst, use a hairdryer to get the water flowing again. Be sure to heat the full pipe gently and evenly. Sometimes it's the difference between two temperatures that causes harm.
- Check insulation. If pipes are inside the house, make sure they're well-insulated so there's a smaller chance of winter harm. Even if the pipe is located outside, consider covering it with basic insulation to prevent the worst of the frost from hitting it.
Unfortunately, we can't always prevent pipes from breaking. When the damage is done, it's best to call in San Diego plumbers who have expertise and experience fixing damaged pipes. For more information or for free quotes on the cost of broken pipe repair, contact us today.