Do I Need to Protect My Water Pipes from Freezing?
Preventing your home’s water pipes from bursting is a relatively easy job, especially when compared with the task of recovering from an instance of burst pipes.
Many people in slightly warmer climates believe that they needn’t worry about frozen water pipes, however, it just takes one very cold frost and you could be in a world of trouble where your water is concerned.
Another thing to consider is that a lot of homes in warmer climates don’t have much protection against frost in the first place. This makes them very susceptible should that cold frost come along.
We believe that the best course of action is prevention, rather than cure. As mentioned above, the clean-up following burst pipes can be a rather tremendous task, while the prevention of burst pipes can be done easily with a little bit of knowledge and common sense.
Is it Expensive to Protect Against Frozen Water Pipes?
A big reason why a lot of people don’t prepare for the possibility of a pipe freeze is because they believe they can’t afford to pay the related costs. This should not be a concern.
You can pick up pipe insulation in various sizes and forms for just pennies or pounds. Who knows? That one length of pipe insulation that cost you 80p may go on to save you hundreds of pounds when the cold snaps come.
So no, the truth of the matter is that water pipe freeze protection / insulation is not at all expensive and is most definitely worth the expense when you consider the potential savings, both in terms of financial cost and time/effort cost.
So, How Can I Prevent My Water Pipes from Freezing?
There are many things that can be done to prevent burst pipes, and luckily for the most part it just takes common sense and some easily affordable materials.
Here are our top 3 methods for preventing frozen water pipes:
Keep Your Heating on
As mentioned, a big part of the prevention of frozen pipes is common sense. If your pipes are situated within a heated building, it’s quite logical that they will be less likely to freeze than if they were in an unheated place.
Naturally, a lot of people will have their home heating on when the weather outside is frosty, however, a lot of people fall short by leaving their heating off when they’re not around. This seems to make sense, of course if you’re not home, why spend money keeping the place heated?
Well, you don’t need to have the heat turned way up, so long as you keep the room at room temperature (20⁰C) give or take 5⁰C.
Again, the small cost of heating your home to room temperature should be more than worth it for the potential savings of time, money & effort.
Run Your Taps – Keep A Steady Drip
Water pipes contain pressurised water, this is what forces the water out of your tap when it is turned on. While the tap is turned off, this water is allowed to pressurise within the pipes and sit still. Water, when it is pressurised and still, is in the perfect state for freezing.
We recommend that you keep your tap turned very slightly on. Even if just enough for a slight but constant drip, this will be enough to relieve pressure within the pipes and help to prevent freezing.
Insulation is Key
The most effective method for preventing your pipes from freezing is to insulate them.
We’re not saying that you must add extra insulation to any rooms that contain pipes (though that too would certainly help), water pipe insulation is cheap and very effective as it is applied directly over the water pipes.
This task can be as simple or complicated as you want it to be. You could go around insulating anything and everything you possibly can, and yes, that would be hugely beneficial, though not very cost-effective.
Generally, you can keep things cheap and simple whilst still gaining great levels of protection against frost.
We recommend going for a pre-shaped polyethylene pipe insulation, as these are readily available at very low prices from most home & DIY shops and are extremely easy to fit, just by cutting to size and sliding the insulation tube over your pipework.
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