Winter is coming. Sure, here in Albuquerque we don’t have it as bad as others. Maybe you think it’s impossible to be dealing with frozen pipes in Albuquerque. We don’t have to deal with blizzards, sub-zero temperatures, and feet of snow, but it does get cold. It can get really cold! It is definitely going to drop below freezing at some point, and when that happens is when we have to start thinking about frozen pipes.
What is the Danger?
Water is unlike any other substance in the world. When water freezes it expands. Normally, this isn’t an issue. In fact, if it wasn’t for plumbing, we would probably never care about expanding water at all! But, because of plumbing, frozen water can become a major issue. When water freezes and expands in your pipes it could cause a burst. The odds are, you won’t even notice this burst until much later when the water unfreezes and massive flood begins. Yes, frozen pipes can definitely cause problems.
Frozen Pipe Prevention
Obviously, pipes only freeze when exposed to very low temperatures. The best way to keep them from freezing is to keep the temperature up! This isn’t too difficult for the pipes inside your home. Cranking up the thermostat should get the job done. Pipes outside your home are going to need a little more attention. If pipes are infrequently used, you can simply drain them and turn off their water source. Otherwise, consider installing insulating ‘pipe sleeves’ which should keep things from becoming frosty.
Thawing Frozen Pipes
If a pipe has frozen but hasn’t burst, you need to take action quickly! Leave the faucet connected to the pipe open while you are doing your work. When water starts flowing, you will know immediately. Apply direct heat to the pipe. You can use a hairdryer, a heating pad, a space heater, or a warm, wet towel. Do not use anything with an open flame as that could create a hazardous situation.
As with any plumbing issue, including plumbing leaks from busted frozen pipes, our experts at Albuquerque Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling are here to help! Our Emergency Services are on call 24/7 all winter long.