Freeze alert! Protect those pipes!January 8, 2016
After we practically spent the holidays in our shorts, temperatures that were much-more winterlike came roaring in — and some unprepared water customers found out the hard way what happens when pipes aren’t protected.
Remember, if your pipes or water meter are in an uninsulated or unheated area, you should take steps to protect them. If your water meter is damaged because of freezing, LCA will charge you for its replacement.
Insulating your meter is a simple way to protect it. The easiest way to insulate a water meter is with a specially made cover. If you’re not sure what kind to purchase, check with a plumbing supplier.
If your pipes or meter are in an unheated crawl space, they’ll need to be insulated — especially if the crawl space is open to drafts. You may want to invest in “heat tape” — available most places plumbing supplies are sold — to wrap around the pipes and meter. If you’re unable or unsure how to do this project, contact an electrician or plumber to ensure it’s done properly and safely.
If you haven’t done so already, turn off the water to outside faucets (there should be shutoff valves inside the house).
Never shut off the heat when you are away. Lower the thermostat instead — shutting off the heat can lead to frozen pipes.
Finally, if a pipe becomes frozen, never use a torch to thaw it. Instead, heat the room or use a hair dryer. Remember, frozen pipes can crack, so when they thaw out, they can cause a flood.
If you have questions about how to protect your water lines and meter, don’t hesitate to call us at 610-398-2505.