Winter is the time of year when your pipes freeze and burst, causing you to have to pay many dollars to get them fixed. This is because your home’s pipes are exposed to a much colder environment than they’re used to. When this happens, the water in your pipes freezes and expands, which causes them to crack, break, or burst.
According to a recent survey, more than 50% of Americans have had their pipes freeze at least once in their lifetime.
This is a nightmare scenario for anyone who has ever experienced it—and if you haven’t yet, you probably know someone who has.
What if there was something you could do to help your pipes? What if there was a way to prevent them from freezing during the coldest months of the year?
Don’t worry! We’re here to help you avoid this situation entirely so that you never have to worry about frozen pipes again.
In this article, the best repiping specialists in Salt Lake City will give you proven tips to Winterize Your Pipes.
All you need is a few minutes, some water, and a little bit of effort.
So let’s go over how to prevent burst pipes in winter!
How long does it take for pipes to freeze and burst?
Frozen pipes or burst pipes in winter are a problem that plagues homeowners all over the world. The good news is that it’s not hard to prevent frozen pipes, and it doesn’t take much time or effort to fix them if they do freeze. Here are some statistics about frozen pipes that will shock you:
- The average temperature in the US is 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 C).
- The average temperature inside an unheated home in the winter is 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 C)
- According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), more than 2 million homes suffer from frozen pipes each year, and those numbers are only increasing.
- The average cost of repairing frozen pipes is $1,000-$2,000 US dollars.
- Frozen pipes are the leading cause of house fires in the US, with about 50,000 fires caused yearly by frozen pipes. That’s more than all other causes combined!
But how long does it take for pipes to freeze and burst?
Well, that depends.
The average age of a pipe is usually between 60 and 80 years old, so they’re not quite as young as you might think. But if you’ve got pipes that are older, or if you live in an area with particularly cold winters, your pipes could be facing some serious weathering.
But even if your pipes are young and healthy, there’s still no guarantee that they won’t freeze—it’s just a matter of when. The amount of time it takes for a pipe to burst depends on everything from where the water is flowing (a high-pressure area) to how much insulation your house has.
Generally, It usually takes about 4-6 hours for pipes to freeze and another 24 hours for them to burst.
If we talk about a pipeline that carries natural gas, it takes about two hours for the gas to freeze and burst the pipe. If it’s a garden hose, it takes about two minutes for it to freeze and burst the pipe.
Do frozen pipes always burst?
When it comes to frozen pipes, it’s not always the case that they burst.
In fact, when you think about it, frozen pipes usually burst because there has been some kind of leak or damage to the pipe. And if there’s no leak or damage, then they don’t burst! So while a lot of people assume that freezing weather is what causes frozen pipes—and it does—it’s also true that not all pipes burst during freezing weather.
But they do burst most of the time, so taking some precautions is a good idea.
Here are some common scenarios when frozen pipes burst:
One of the primary causes of burst pipes is freezing temperatures. When the water inside a pipe freezes, it expands and exerts pressure on the pipe walls, leading to cracks or bursts.
Over time, pipes can corrode due to chemical reactions with water or other substances flowing through them. Corrosion weakens the pipe material, making it more prone to bursting.
High water pressure
Excessive water pressure can put stress on the pipes, causing them to burst. This can occur due to faulty pressure regulators or problems with the municipal water supply.
Age and wear
Pipes deteriorate with age, and older pipes are more susceptible to bursting. The materials may weaken over time, leading to cracks or leaks that can eventually result in a burst.
Improper installation or poor craftsmanship
Faulty installation, such as improper joint connections or inadequate pipe supports, can cause stress points in the plumbing system. These weak points are more likely to experience bursts.
Accidental pipe damage, such as accidental drilling, construction-related activities, or other external forces, can cause pipes to burst.
Clogs or blockages
Blockages in the plumbing system can lead to pressure buildup, increasing the risk of burst pipes. This can occur due to the accumulation of debris, sediment, or foreign objects in the pipes.
Shifting soil or ground movement
In unstable soil or seismic activity areas, ground movement can exert pressure on the pipes, causing them to crack or burst.
Water hammer refers to the sudden pressure surge that occurs when water flow is abruptly stopped or redirected. The shockwaves created by the water hammer can stress the pipes, leading to bursts.
How to thaw frozen plumbing?
Frozen plumbing is no laughing matter. If you don’t thaw it out, it can cause all sorts of problems: clogged drains, backed-up toilets, and more. So how do you go about thawing frozen pipes?
- Identify the frozen pipe: Determine which pipe or pipes are frozen. Typically, pipes in unheated areas like basements, crawl spaces, attics, or exterior walls are more likely to freeze.
- Turn on the faucet closest to where the pipe is frozen to allow water to run down into the pipes and begin melting them from the inside out.
- Next, apply heat. There are several methods to apply heat to thaw frozen pipes. Choose one that suits your situation:
- Hairdryer: Use a hairdryer on low or medium heat to blow warm air directly onto the frozen pipe. Start from the faucet end and work your way toward the frozen section. Avoid using high heat or placing the hairdryer too close to the pipe to prevent damage.
- A heat lamp or space heater: Position a heat lamp or space heater near the frozen pipe, ensuring a safe distance and avoiding any flammable materials. Monitor the device closely while it operates.
- Hot towels or electric heating pads: Wrap hot towels soaked in hot water around the frozen pipe or use electric heating pads. Secure them in place and replace them with fresh hot towels or pads until the ice thaws.
- Hot water: If the frozen pipe is accessible and there are no electrical hazards, carefully pour hot water over the pipe. Start near the faucet and continue along the length of the frozen section.
- Run hot water through your faucets for 5 minutes and every 2 hours until your pipes have completely thawed out.
- If none of this works for you, call in a professional repiping specialist in Salt Lake City, UT!
12 Tips to Winterize Your Pipes
We all know how it feels to see the snow start to fall and immediately think about how cold it’s going to get. But if you’re like most people, you probably don’t give much thought to what happens inside your home when the temperature drops. That’s because freezing pipes aren’t something that typically comes up in conversation unless you live somewhere where freezing temperatures are an annual occurrence—like Minnesota.
But whether or not you live where freezing temperatures are common, they can still happen—and when they do, they can cause serious damage to your home. That’s why we’re here today: We want to help you learn how to prevent pipe bursts in the winter.
Here are a few tips to keep your plumbing in good shape as you brave through the long cold nights ahead:
Insulate Exposed Pipes.
Inspect your home for exposed pipes that could be vulnerable to freezing temperatures. If you have exposed pipes, consider wrapping them in foam insulation or installing a radiator blanket over them to prevent the cold from penetrating through to the pipe itself.
Seal Air Leaks.
Air leaks can allow cold air into your home and contribute to higher heating bills by increasing the amount of heat required to warm up your space. Look around your house for possible areas where the air is leaking out, such as cracks in windows or doors and gaps between drywall joints. Use weather stripping or caulk to seal these leaks shut so that warm air stays inside where it belongs!
Open Cabinet Doors.
If your cabinet doors are closed, the cold air can’t get out, and warm air can’t get in. So if you want to learn how to prevent burst water pipes in cold weather, make sure your cabinet doors open enough so they can breathe (and so they don’t suffocate).
Maintain Heating In Cold Areas.
If you have rooms that are particularly cold, like a garage or basement, make sure to keep the heat running through them. If a pipe freezes where there is no heat source nearby, it will burst and cause a lot of damage.
Stay Away From Sinks And Toilets.
If possible, try not using sinks or toilets while they’re frozen; this will prevent damage from occurring when thawing occurs later on down the road (and could even cause flooding!). If you use these appliances during freezing periods, use caution when turning them back on after thawing occurs; wait about two hours before turning them on.
Disconnect Outdoor Hoses.
If you have an outdoor hose—and who doesn’t?—unscrew the end and drain off any remaining water in the hose before storing it for the winter. Then wrap it with plastic or rubber bands to keep out moisture and store it upside down so that water can’t collect inside.
Let Faucets Drip
Running water through your pipes is one way to understand how to prevent burst pipes in cold weather, but it also wastes a lot of water—and we all know how precious that commodity is during the winter months! Instead of keeping your faucets running constantly, use a timer to turn them on for a couple of minutes every hour or two to keep them from freezing up.
Disconnect Outdoor Hoses.
If you have an exposed outdoor hose that’s prone to freezing in the winter, disconnect it from the fixture and let it drip into a bucket or other container. This will keep your hose from freezing and bursting, which means no more leaks!
Close Foundation Vents.
When it gets cold outside, heat rises up through your foundation vents and into your house. This is great for how to prevent burst pipes in an empty homes but not so great for keeping things from freezing in the winter. Close your foundation vents to keep heat from escaping from your home. You can do this by placing duct tape over the vents or using a foam insulation product like Great Stuff.
Keep The Thermostat Consistent.
A lot of people think they’re helping out when they turn down their thermostats during colder months—and while that might be true in some cases, it’s not always a good idea to turn down your thermostat too much because it could lead to frozen pipes! Instead of turning down the whole house or individual rooms, set one room at a reasonable temperature (around 65 degrees) with no heat source running inside of it (like an electric heater). This will allow other parts of your house to stay warmer.
Monitor Weather Forecasts.
The best way to know how to prevent a burst pipe is to monitor the weather forecast. Check the local news or weather channel regularly to ensure you know what’s coming up regarding temperatures and precipitation. You want to be aware if there are any winter storms expected to hit your area so that you can act accordingly.
Drain The Plumbing System If Leaving For An Extended Period.
If you are going to be away from home for an extended period of time (more than 1 week), it’s best to drain your plumbing system before leaving so that no water remains in it while temperatures drop below freezing outside. This will keep any remaining water from freezing inside your pipes and bursting them when temperatures rise again later in the season once winter has passed.
Frozen pipes are a serious problem in cold weather. Not only do they cause a lot of damage, but they can additionally lead to serious health problems. That’s why we’re here to help you find the best solution for your frozen pipes.
We’ll answer the most common questions we get from people who’ve experienced frozen pipes and repiping whole-house solutions in Salt Lake City, UT.
What are frozen pipes, and why should I care about them?
Frozen pipes are what happens when water in your home freezes. Pipes can freeze because of cold temperatures outside and inside your house or because you let the water in your home sit for too long without heating it.
How much does it cost to repipe an entire house?
Repiping an entire house varies based on many factors, including where in the USA you live or how many people live inside each room (in terms of square footage). In general, though, expect prices to range from $5,000 – $10,000 depending on what materials are used during construction and whether or not they need replacing after installation.
What is the difference between frozen pipes and repiping?
Frozen pipes are a common problem in winter but can be incredibly dangerous and destructive. Repiping your home or apartment is an important step toward preventing frozen pipes and maintaining your plumbing system.
Do I need to thaw my pipes before I repipe my whole house?
No, you don’t. Repiping your whole house is a process that can be done in one day, and we’ll take care of everything.
Get Permanent Home Repiping Solution from Mr. Expert Plumbing!
In winter, your pipes freeze. As they do, they expand and contract, which can crack the pipes as they thaw out in the spring. This is a problem because cracks allow water to leak into your walls and insulation. And that means you might be wasting money on your utility bills—and could even be risking your health by breathing in mold spores.
You might think that regular maintenance can help keep your pipes from freezing, but even if your home has a working heating system, plenty of other factors can contribute to your pipes bursting. Even if there’s no frost on the ground or snow on the roof, you could still end up with a frozen pipe if temperatures dip below freezing. So how do you prevent this from happening? The answer is simple! Repiping the whole house.
Repiping your whole house is the most cost-effective way to ensure you’ll never have to deal with this problem again.
But who do you trust when it comes to cost-effective, top-notch quality, and guaranteed repiping solutions?
Look no further than Mr. Expert Plumbing!
We are a team of professional plumbers who have been providing customers with quality plumbing services for over 10 years. We pride ourselves on being thorough and efficient, so you won’t have to worry about hidden costs or surprise fees; our prices are upfront and clear. We are fully licensed and insured, so you can trust us to do the job right.
Mr. Expert Plumbing has been in business for over 10 years and has built a reputation for excellence in customer service, professionalism, and quality workmanship. All of our licensed, skilled, and experienced plumbers go through extensive training before they start working on any project so that they can provide you with top-notch plumbing service at an affordable price! We take pride in offering our customers peace of mind by providing 100% satisfaction and guaranteed plumbing services in Salt Lake City, UT, and the surrounding area every single time!
We offer permanent home repiping solutions that will keep your plumbing in tip-top shape, regardless of the weather. We do it all: from installing new piping to repairing old pipes, we’ve got your back. Our goal is to help you get the most out of your plumbing system, so you can be confident that your pipes will last for years to come. So don’t let those freezing temps take out your plumbing systems—call us today at (801) 560-8207 to know more about offers on Plumbing Maintenance in Salt Lake City.