emergency frozen pipes

Here in Toronto it gets cold, VERY cold! And one of the most common calls we receive during the long winter months is for emergency frozen pipes. If a pipe has the chance to become frozen, the water expansion can cause the pipe to actually break. It could cause a little pin hole leak or a full-blown spray and water can cause a lot of damage in a short period of time. Even worse if you are on vacation or at work and the water has a chance to spray for hours!

To get you prepared for winter, we have complied our plumbers top 5 tips to avoid emergency frozen pipes this winter!

1. Disconnect or winterize any outdoor plumbing

If you have an in-ground lawn irrigation system, make sure to drain or winterize this system. Since it is outdoors and very exposed to the plunging temperatures, these systems are more prone to getting emergency frozen pipes.

2. Insulate drafty spaces

Ensure that any drafty spaces or chilly areas of your basement with plumbing are well insulated. Even insulating pipes in crawlspaces is an excellent idea.

3. Drain outdoor hose connections

A cracked hose bib or hose connection is the number one emergency frozen pipes call we get. This is because it has little shelter from the blowing cold wind and low temps. To get winter ready, drain this tap and turn it off from the inside. You could even get a “frost free” model that when turned off, actually shuts off farther down the line. Helping keep the water back from the dangerous outside wall and cold temps.  

4. Keep the heat on

We all want to save money but turning your heat completely off when you leave for vacation is a bad idea. Without the warmth your furnace provides, the water in your pipes will become cold enough to freeze. You can turn the heat down but make sure to keep the temperature above 0. It is also a good idea to have a friend or relative check on your home while you are away.

5. Keep the water flowing

When water is sitting in a colder environment that hovers around 0 it can cause emergency frozen pipes. One way to combat this is to keep the water moving by keeping a tap on just a trickle.

As the weather gets colder, it is important to be prepared. We hope by using our 5 tips you can avoid emergency frozen pipes. If you DO end up with frozen pipes, call us right away! We have safe heating technology to warm your pipes up and fix it fast