Tips For Winterizing Your Plumbing In Plano, TX
It’s soon time for the weather to be cold enough to freeze plumbing pipes. Give some thought to your plumbing system this year so it will be reliable this winter. Winterizing your plumbing in Plano is the best way to avoid leaks and plumbing repairs for the season. Here are some winterizing tips from your local experts at Harvey West Plumbing.
Winterize Outdoor Plumbing Pipes
If there are water pipes located indoors but along an exterior wall, you’ll need to wrap them well with proper insulation made for plumbing pipes. This includes hot water heater pipes. Pipes near an outside wall often get frozen in the winter. Be sure they are well insulated and you’ll not have problems with frozen pipes in this area.
Every last inch of your outdoor pipes needs to be wrapped with insulation. They must be properly wrapped with no way for moisture to get in or the pipes will freeze.
Be Sure You Wrap Plumbing Pipes Properly
When you wrap pipes or any other areas with insulation, it’s important that you completely seal the area. Otherwise, cold air and moisture will get up under the insulation and the insulation will be useless.
Wrap All Outdoor Spigots and Valves
During winter, you won’t be doing any gardening or anything like that. It’s perfectly fine to insulate, wrap, and basically cover up your outdoor spigots and valves. You should also wrap exposed parts of the irrigation system if you have one. Basically, any type of plumbing fixture that allows water into it will be exposed to the cold and can break, causing splits and leaks.
Why Do Plumbing Pipes Break When They Freeze?
Frozen pipes usually break, but not always. In fact, if the weather were to clear up and temperatures rose, it’s quite possible the pipes would be fine when the frozen water within melts. But often, freezing will cause a connection to split or a crack to develop in the pipe.
Water expands as it freezes, taking up more space than when in liquid form. This sounds strange because cold makes a material contract, right? That’s true, and that’s also true for the pipe material itself. But the water inside does not, it expands.
As the water expands and the plumbing pipes are contracting, this makes even more pressure within the pipe than there already is. With nowhere to go but out, the frozen water needs more room to expand than the pipe can handle and bam! -it breaks open somewhere along the line.