How To Prepare Your Plumbing For Cold Or Freezing Temperatures

December 30, 2022

8 Tips You Need To Prepare Your SW Oklahoma Plumbing For Cold And Freezing Temperatures

Protect Your Pipes From Colder Temperatures And Avoid Damage To Your Home

When the weather in SW Oklahoma gets colder, and temperatures plummet to freezing or below, your plumbing needs to be protected. Remember, when a pipe freezes, water lines can develop pinhole leaks, cracks, and ultimately break, flooding your home with water when it unfreezes.

But before you panic, we have some good news – there are a few easy things that you can do to protect your plumbing when the weather starts to get cold.

Check out these eight tips for preparing your SW Oklahoma plumbing for the frigid winter weather.

1. Prepare Your Spigot

Many people think that because their spigot is outdoors, it can handle freezing temperatures. However, this kind of thinking can get you into trouble!

To start to prepare your spigots, be sure that you disconnect your water hose and drain the water. Leaving a water hose attached throughout the winter will not only ruin the water hose, but it can also allow water to freeze going into your spigot.

Afterward, be sure that you cover your spigot to help insulate it from the cold temperatures. Many people may wrap a piece of insulation around the spigot, then cover it with a garbage bag to ensure no moisture gets near it.

Another popular option is purchasing a product explicitly designed to protect your outdoor water source. These outdoor spigot covers look like a plastic box that is insulated to cover the spigot, designed to sit flush against the wall where your fixture is located. 

2. Open The Bathroom And Kitchen Sink Cabinets

While almost everyone prefers to leave their cabinets closed to hide items, you will want to open up your bathroom and kitchen sink cabinets when the weather gets cooler. Believe it or not, doing this can make all the difference between frozen pipes and not.

With the cabinet doors open, the warm air in your home will circulate the pipes, preventing them from freezing. When the doors remain closed, there is nothing but cold air circulating these pipes, which can freeze them.

3. Let Your Faucet Drip

On nights when temperatures drop super low, allow your faucets to drip. This small amount of water will keep water flowing continuously through the pipes. A pipe with running water is less likely to freeze than those filled with standing or stagnant water. We frequently see this outdoors – rivers freeze much less regularly than lakes or ponds. 

But you don’t have to turn your faucets on full blast – you just need to ensure a continuous drip for the best results. You will want every sink dripping slightly to ensure the water flows smoothly.

4. Ensure Pipes Are Insulated

Many people who want to make sure frozen pipes are not an issue for their home insulate the pipes themselves. If your plumbing is near the ground or in a cold basement, then insulation around these can prevent problems.

Most people may have had their plumbing insulated upon building their homes, but it is a project you can do even after the house has been standing for many years.

5. Keep A Good Interior Temperature

When your home is at a suitable temperature, your pipes are less likely to freeze. The good news is that if you are home when the cold snap hits, chances are you have the heat going in your home.

However, if you leave your home for the winter, you still need to have the heat on when gone. While you do not have to set your thermostat at 68 or 70 degrees, a steady 55 degrees is recommended for empty homes to avoid frozen water pipes.

6. Seal Any Cracks To Prevent Cold Air From Entering Your Home

Have you ever been sitting in your home and felt a cold draft on your legs or neck? There could be a chance the draft you are feeling is coming from a gap in your home, allowing cold air to make its way into your home.

Some familiar places for air leaks are your doors and windows, especially if they are dated or damaged. You will want to take the time to determine where the leaks are and then seal these to ensure that the heat in your home is not escaping and the cold air is not penetrating your home. 

Properly sealing your home is the best way to ensure energy efficiency, and it can go a long way in protecting your plumbing.

7. Consider A Space Heater

Many people invest in small space heaters for super cold nights in locations where the plumbing may be susceptible to freezing – for example, a basement bathroom or even a garage sink. 

The space heater is placed near the plumbing and turned on low to ensure warm air is constantly circulating these water pipes. However, you must be careful with this tactic, as space heaters can be dangerous if left unattended and cause house fires.

8. Insulation In Your Home Is A Must

How insulated is your entire home? The more insulated your home is, the less likely you will have pipes that freeze. If you fear your insulation is not up to par, consider replacing everything.

The type of insulation you have in your home will determine if it has lived past its shelf life. There is insulation that has a shelf life of 100 years, while others may need to be replaced after 20 years. Of course, if you have had a leak and insulation has become damaged at any time, it needs to be replaced as it is not functioning correctly.

If Frozen Pipes Happen In Your SW Oklahoma Home, Get Help With A Free Quote

If you want to protect your SW Oklahoma home from frozen pipes or need help fixing damage, our experts can help. Robinson Air offers free quotes to determine the extent of the damage and to provide solutions to correct it.

Contact us or call us today at 580-699-5760 to get started. Do this as soon as you know you have issues from your pipes freezing to avoid even more repairs in your home.