Property owners who often experience frozen pipe problems are those living in areas with cold temperature and have cold winter weather. When the temperature drops to 32 degrees Fahrenheit and below, there is the possible risk of the pipes in the homes freezing. Good thing there are several techniques to solve this problem.
Frozen pipes can lead to two problems, loss of running water and worse, pipe bursts. The latter is possible because as the water freezes, it has a tendency to expand. When the diameter of the pipe cannot contained the expansion, the pipe can break and can even burst, which is a much bigger problem that can cause damage and flooding inside the house.
Water pipes that are prone to freezing are those who are exposed against a wall exterior and the ones installed in attics and areas of the house with less or no insulation, swimming pool water lines and those which are out in the open. If a pipe freeze problem sets in, the only way to solve this to thaw your water pipe.
Steps to Thaw Frozen Pipes
Search For The Source.
It is important to determine which part of the pipe line is frozen. First, turn on the faucet and let the water flow. Then check the pipe line especially the areas that are exposed, beginning from the faucet and down to the possible location of the freezing. If you see a bulging section or frost on the pipe, then you have found the source.
Try To Melt The Ice.
There are several ways to thaw the freeze in the pipe. If the pipe is exposed, remember to open the main valve of the water and turn on the faucet so water will flow. Start applying heat from the faucet down to the part where you need to thaw.
One device to use is a hair dryer. Set it to high to ensure it emits enough heat. It is advisable to turn on the faucet and start from there down to the pipe that is blocked so water can help with the melting. Also, you can use a baking sheet and place under the pipe against the wall so it can conduct heat as help with the process.
Another way to do this is by using a portable heater. This is as effective as a hair dryer and can even work more effectively. A powerful heater is suitable for working under kitchen cabinets. You can also make use of an incandescent lamp and an electric heating pad which you can wrap the pipe with.
Keep Water Flowing
While doing any of these, remember to keep the water running so it will flow in the pipes. And if none of these work or the pipe that is frozen is inside the wall or inaccessible, it is best to call in a plumber. Consider getting a plumbing specialist as well if you see that the pipe has a crack since you might need to have the pipe replaced.
A frozen pipe is not surprising for houses built in areas with cold temperature and if ignored, can lead to a more serious damage. However, if you get into this situation, there is no need to panic since there are effective ways to get through this. And if all else fails, there is always the reliable plumber to save the day.