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Frozen pipe prevention and thawing tips

There are few calamities that can cause as much damage and mayhem as flooding in your home. In the wintertime, one of the leading causes of household flooding is burst pipes.

Fortunately, there are a few easy-to-follow tips that you can do that will help to prevent the pipes in your home from freezing and eventually bursting during our coldest winter days.

Watch for Pipes in Particularly Vulnerable Places


Some pipes in your home may be installed in places that are more susceptible to the cold. In particular, the outside taps where you connect your garden hose should be winterized.

To do this, the water supply valve to the tap found inside the house must be turned off, and the tap opened to let any water drain out.

Do you have any pipes running through your garage or attic? Often, these areas are not heated or insulated. Therefore, pipes found there are more subject to the cold. You can help keep the cold air away from the pipes by making sure that the windows and doors are kept closed at all times.

Run the Hot Water

By letting the hot water run for a little while, you’ll be helping your plumbing system and therefore reducing the risk of ice forming.

Install Some Heating Tape on Your Pipes

Heating tape wraps around your pipes and plugs into a standard electrical outlet. The filament inside the tape helps keep the pipes warm and stops space from forming inside them.

More Useful Suggestions

  • Insulate your pipes with foam insulation

  • Keep cabinet doors under your kitchen and bathroom sinks open

What to Do to Thaw a Frozen Pipe


As you might expect, the best way to thaw frozen pipe is to warm it up. You can achieve this by placing a space heater or heat lamp close by, or by aiming a hairdryer at the affected pipe. 

If the trouble persists, you may need the assistance of a plumber. To reduce the potential amount of flooding that would occur if the pipe were to break, you could shut off the main water supply to your house and open some taps to drain the water from the system.

Call Duane Blanton Plumbing, Sewer, Heating & Cooling, the trusted Round Lake plumbing experts at (815) 781-2567 for all your plumbing repair and replacement needs.

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