Few cold-weather mishaps are more irritating than frozen pipes, but what exactly causes them? During the drop in temperature, water might freeze inside plastic pipes, which cause it to expand out and pressurize. Not only can these frozen pipes prevent water from flowing the right way, but they can potentially burst and cause severe flooding inside your home. How can you really tell if your pipes are frozen though? If you turn on the kitchen or bathroom sink and see only a handful of drips or a trickle of water, this could mean that water in the pipes are frozen – preventing free flow. If this occurs, don’t panic. Here’s a quick pipe repair lesson to help you thaw a frozen pipe.
Turn On Your Faucet
The first step in your pipe repair is to turn on the faucet. Keep it running. Allowing your faucet to drip even slightly can help prevent the pipe from bursting. It’s easy – when freezing takes place, extreme pressure can build up between the faucet and ice blockage. An open faucet relieves this buildup, in turn preventing a burst from happening.
Apply Heat By The Frozen Spot
Slowly applying heat using a hairdryer. There’s a few ways to do this. You could wrap up the pipes in thermostatic heat tape, or you could use an external heat source like a space heater or hairdryer. If you decide to use a hairdryer, start by directing air close to the faucet end of the pipe and move it towards the coldest spot. Remember, the faucet should be left on while the heat is there. This is another solid step towards proper pipe repair.
Keep Applying Heat
Do not stop heating until full water pressure is restored. Even then, it is a good idea to leave the faucet open for a couple of minutes after the pipe has thawed. This will give the ice time to clear from the line.
Check Out the Faucets and Prevent Pipes from Freezing in the Future
Check each faucet in your house for any other frozen pipes. One frozen pipe could mean others have been affected too. If the problem keeps up, contact a professional plumber to assist with your pipe repair. You could prevent pipes from freezing again.
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Alpha Plumbing is a full-service plumbing and contracting company serving the Baltimore and Annapolis metro area with expertise in all aspects of plumbing. We’re family-owned and operated since 1991 from our office in Pasadena. We offer quality plumbing services at reasonable rates in a timely fashion. Our trucks are equipped with GPS systems to ensure we’re prompt and on time. No job is too large or too small! We maintain a fleet of well-stocked trucks and also own and operate our own backhoes for jobs requiring excavation.
For more information and to get a free no-obligation estimate, you can contact us on our website, send us an e-mail, or give us a call at (410) 255-5998.