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Damien McCusker, Manager of Arpi's residential service division, has been working in the HVAC industry for 16 years and has hands-on experience in new home installations, furnace and air conditioner replacements, sales and residential service. He spends most of his spare time being an UBER driver, driving his kids to soccer practice and games.

If Plumbing Pipes Freeze This Year, You'll Get More Than Just A Headache

Phil Laprairie

If your plumbing pipes freeze this winter, it’s more than just an inconvenience that keeps you from accessing water for normal household tasks. Frozen pipes can cause serious damage if they burst and create an indoor flood. Not only would you have to replace carpeting, flooring, and belongings, you would have to face the expense of an emergency plumbing call that could result in very extensive repairs. Even minor leaks caused by frozen pipes could create areas of moisture in your home that could result in mold growth, structural damage or unpleasant odors.

At about minus-6 degrees C, pipes will begin to freeze. If ice builds up and blocks the water flow, the pipes will crack and burst because of excess water pressure in the line behind the ice. The best solution to frozen plumbing pipes is prevention. You can use the following techniques to keep your pipes clear of ice even when the temperatures outside are falling.

  • Insulate pipes: Make sure pipes are insulated with pre-made sheaths or wrapped with blanket-style insulation. Pay particular attention to pipes in areas of your home that are not well heated.
  • Apply heat tapes: Heat tapes are electric wires that contain heating elements. Wrap pipes with heat tapes and plug them in to produce enough heat to prevent freezing.
  • Run water: When temperatures get near the danger zone, turn on faucets and run a thin stream of cold water constantly. This keeps water flowing and reduces pressure in the line, which helps prevent freezing.
  • Open cabinets: Open cabinet doors under sinks so that indoor heat can more easily get to your plumbing pipes.
  • Maintain consistent indoor temperatures: Don’t turn your heating system down at night or when you are away during the day. Consistent temperatures will protect your pipes.

Customers in Calgary and the surrounding communities know they can trust Arpi’s Industries Ltd. for the HVAC service and support to get them through winter. Contact us today for more information on how to not let your plumbing pipes freeze and for the supplies and equipment that will help keep your plumbing system safe while the seasonal temperatures keep dropping.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about Freezing Plumbing Pipes and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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