RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — With temperatures dipping below freezing, frozen pipes could spell big trouble for your home.
Frozen pipes could leave you with no water or even worse with bursting pipes, leading to costly clean-up and repair.
“Sometimes a whole house will have to be re-piped due to the amount of damage and broken pipes.”, says John Stemmle, President of Stemmle Plumbing Repair.
To keep your pipes running smoothly, Stemmle says, “If you have a crawl space, you want to close all the foundation vents. If you close the foundation vents, that’ll keep the wind from getting across the pipes and hopefully stop it from freezing. If you can open up the cabinet doors, that’ll sometimes help get some heat back into there and prevent anything from bursting and freezing in the walls.”
You can also keep your faucets on a slow drip to keep them from bursting.
The number one thing to know according to Stemmle, is where to shut off the water to your house.
“Usually there’s a valve under a house, in a closet by a water heater. and also, know where to turn it off on the street.”, Stemmle explains.
This will save your plumber time getting to the right spot.
You’ll also want to disconnect hoses from the water supply to keep them from icing up.
Another thing you can do if your pipes do start to freeze, the Henirco Fire Department suggests heating sections of pipe with an electric heating pad, space heater, or hair dryer until you have full water pressure again.