Winter is often a very challenging season, mostly because many potential problems it carries with it. Thanks to low temperatures, it is not rare to experience the problem of frozen pipes in a home, a cabin or any other space that is in use during the cold months of the year. It is easy to see why this problem could become a nightmare scenario for any individual or a family. Luckily, this does not have to be the case. Here are ways frozen pipe problems can be prevented by maintenance, and mended in a speedy and cost effective manner.
Frozen Pipes Explained
At a first glance, formation of the ice inside of a pipe is the simple explanation of how this problem occurs. But, there is more to it. Apart from blocking the flow of liquid in the frozen segment, the same ice will also produce damage to the pipes. This is the result of the fact that water expands when it becomes ice, thus breaking or twisting the pipe in the area where it became frozen. The break then produces fissures, which begin to leak once the pipes are put back into use. This means that the pipes need to be replaced, which can cost up to 900 US dollars.
Avoiding the Frozen Pipes Scenario
The best solution for the issue of ice forming inside of any pipes is to stop it from happening. Any other option is a lot more expensive; significantly less effective and can even lead to permanent damage to a structure.
Here is what needs to be done so that ice cannot form in any home or building that is left unheated during the winter months.
- Switch off the main water supply to a building by closing the initial shutoff valve that brings the water in.
- Drain all water from the water heater
- Get an air compressor and use it to blow all the water that might be trapped in the pipes
- Empty the toilet tanks and open all faucets in the building the let them drain, including faucets that are located outside
- Toilet bowls should also be emptied of all water.
Simply put, water should be drained from a structure’s pipe installation so that owners or residents can be certain that it cannot freeze in them during the cold months. Most of this can be done by anyone, but some services, like the use of an air compressor, might call for some professional help. But, in any case, prevention is definitely a lot better option that the cost and work associated with frozen pipes that burst and damage the property.