Ask a Buffalo Plumber: Prevent Your Pipes From Freezing

Buffalo gets very cold this time of year, and with the snow coming off the lake, it’s going to get messy. Anyone from upstate New York can tell you that frozen pipes bursting can be a serious problem to your home, damaging your property. It isn’t going to be cheap either. What isn’t that well known however, is how to identify pipes at risk for freezing and how to prevent those pipes from freezing, before the cold weather hits.

Here are some tips and tricks on how to find pipes that risk becoming frozen during a cold snap, and how to lower your risk of damage before the weather kicks in.

Identifying Pipes in Risk of Freezing

Step 1: Know Your Home

Often times the simple concept of knowing where your pipes are and where they run to is often overlooked. It’s time to roll up your sleeves, dive down deep into your basement and learn where each of your pipes begin and end up. This may not always be so obvious as some pipes can be hiding behind walls, but look to objects like your water heater as a start. Learn where each pipe goes and what it is used for, taking note of where it is exposed to the open air. If you need it, call the professionals at Roy’s Plumbing to come in and give you a hand. Understanding where pipes are and what they’re used for will help address most home plumbing issues you encounter, including your frozen or burst pipes.

Step 2: Find The Cold

You know that real nasty draft in that one spot in your basement? Are there pipes nearby? Cracks and exposed areas within the home increases the risk for a pipe to freeze if they are exposed to that area. Keep an eye out for these areas and mark those spots where pipes are especially at risk.

Step 3: Watch The Weather

Understanding when cold snaps will happen is a major step in applying the preventative maintenance tips listed out here. Buffalo can be a tricky beast to manage in the winter, and understanding when things will get cold and HOW cold it will get is critical here.

Preventing Pipes From Freezing

Here are some tips to prevent pipes from freezing. Note that you’ll want to address the issue before the cold weather comes: remember, it’s coldest while you’re asleep, so don’t wake up to burst pipes!

1) Insulate pipes: This is especially effective when it comes to pipes that are in high-risk areas. Putting a line of insulation around a pipe will help prevent the water inside from freezing.

2) Leave the faucet running: Leaving a faucet drip slowly will keep water moving within the pipes, reducing the chance it will freeze in place. This is a great option if the power goes out: your home will grow colder, increasing the risk of freezing pipes.

3) Re-Route frozen pipes: A trained Buffalo Plumber can come into your home, help you identify problem areas in your pipes, and re-route or protect the troubled areas to help address the issue.

Don’t Wait For The Cold To Come

Pipes that burst from freezing temperatures are all kinds of trouble. Don’t wait until you’re stuck out in the cold, call Roy’s today to learn more about how you can prevent and address frozen pipes.