Cold Nights & Frozen Pipes
The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety states that the most common cause of property damage during frigid weather is frozen pipes that burst. The average cost of such an event is estimated at $5,000.00 or more. What can you do to prevent those pipes from freezing?
Obviously, pipes that are poorly insulated, exposed and located in unheated areas are more at risk than those located in a temperature-controlled environment. However, even interior pipes running through cabinets and exterior walls are at risk.
There are efforts you can apply to hopefully minimize this risk. As you notice the seasons change and colder weather sets in, take a look around your property and locate areas of risk. The temperature “Alert Level” is at 20 degrees Fahrenheit. When the outdoor temperature reaches this level you will want to take the following steps:
- Keep your garage doors closed. Especially the water supply lines are located there.
- Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the pipes.
- Start a cold-water drip from your faucets. Maintaining water flow will prevent freezing. Even a trickle will do the trick.
- Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night. (Here is where you have to ask yourself: Is a slight increase in my electric bill worth possibly saving you up to or more than $5,000.00? – probably so.)
- Leave your heat on – If you plan to be away during cold weather set the temperature no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
- For a long-term solution – add insulation to attics, basements and crawl spaces. Applying pipe insulation is also a good preventive measure and since it is about 50 cents per linear foot – it is cheap as well.
If by chance you incur water damage from frozen broken pipes or another cause; the first thing you should do is call SERVPRO of Sussex County at 302-856-9768 and we can offer remediation and get you and your home back to normal.