Tips to Prevent Plumbing Freezes

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Temps are expected to plummet this week. Extreme cold temperatures can lead to frozen water pipes or a frozen water line, and that can be a costly fix. Columbia Heights Public Works provides the following tips for preventing frozen pipes on days like these:

-Do not turn your heat down during extreme chills: The cooling down period allows pipes to be exposed to the cold that penetrates the walls before it enters your home.

-Leave cabinet doors under sinks that face outside walls open: These areas are not generally heated and receive cold air coming in through walls.

-Have someone check on your house if you go out of town: Total house freeze-ups result when the heat goes out and the temperature in the house drops below 32 degrees. All the plumbing in the home then freezes.

-Check the water temperature: Allow cold water to run from the faucet until it is as cold as it gets and then check the temperature with a small indoor/outdoor thermometer. The water temperature should be around 45 degrees. If the temperature drops below 40 degrees, frost may be getting close to your service line and you could have an impending freeze up. In that case...

-Let the water run: Let a faucet that has a supply pipe running along an outside wall drip or run at a pencil size stream throughout the day and night until the extreme temps pass. Flowing water freezes slower than standing water in a pipe. The extra cost on your water bill can be considered as insurance to avoid the much bigger inconvenience and expense of correcting a frozen service line.

2-12-2020