Anyone living in an older home could be in danger of freezing pipes in the winter. With sometimes below freezing temperatures in Canada, it's not uncommon for homeowners to have pipes burst or crack due to a buildup of ice in pipes inside and out of their homes. You can always avoid this problem by doing a few simple things this year:
Insulate Pipes That Aren't Encased in a Wall or Floor
In your home, most of your pipes are enclosed in a wall or floor; however, you may have some pipes that are out in the open, whether that's in your basement or garage area. Having these pipes insulated with a foam insulation material will help prevent the pipes from getting so cold that the water inside them gets icy. When pipes get icy, either on the inside or outside of the pipe, cracking and rusting can occur. Purchasing insulation and having a plumbing contractor install it properly will keep your exposed pipes warm for many years. Having your garage walls insulated can also be a great way to preserve heat.
Leave the Thermostat Running When Your Gone
It's tempting for some homeowners to turn off the thermostat completely when they go on vacation or to work. Although the inside of your home may never drop below freezing, areas like the basement walls and foundation, and the garage are cold enough to freeze pipes. Turning the thermostat down but not off can help prevent your home and garage from getting too cold. If you know that the weather could get really cold, it's best to keep the thermostat running when you're gone.
Keep Water Moving Through Your Pipes When You're Gone
Some people not only turn off their heat when leaving on a trip, they also turn of their main water line. Although this isn't a bad idea if temperatures outside are high, it can be a problem if it's winter and things get really cold. It's actually a good idea to keep a small amount of flow going through your pipes during freezing temperatures. Allowing a tiny amount of water to drip through one or two faucets can keep pipes from developing ice. If you aren't going to be home to monitor the situation, it's good to leave a drip running while you're out of town.
If you have older pipes and have had freezing occur several times, the best solution is to purchase modern pipes. They are more energy efficient and better insulated. Insulating every part of your home better can also prevent pipe freezing. Doing what you can to keep your pipes from getting too cold will save you from an expensive plumbing disaster. Talk to experts like Pro-Trade Plumbing & Maintenance for more information.