Today we have a special guest post from the owner of a plumbing company in Ottawa, ON. He will talk to us a bit about frozen pipes and what not to do.
Click here to learn more about Ottawa Plumbing.

If you have a frozen pipe, then you know how difficult it is to fix. And if you have a frozen pipe then you know that it can bust and cause flooding or worse considerable damage to your home and property. The thing is that most people do not know what to do when they have a frozen pipe. Also they tend to think that it cannot happen to them.

Well this article will open your eyes to the dangers of a frozen pipe and the things you should and should not do when you have a frozen pipe. We will also look at how to identify a frozen pipe, what causes a pipe to burst and what to do in case it bursts.

How to identify a frozen pipe

The major indication of a frozen pipe is that you will see a water line usually coated in frost. Also if suddenly your taps or faucets stop running or your toilets are no longer flushing, then you should suspect a frozen pipe.

Why pipes freeze

The truth is that not all frozen pipes will burst. But this is a potential result that might happen.  Why? This happen because when water freezes it expands and then adds pressure on the pipes. As this pressure increases and becomes too much for the pipes to handle, it might burst.

What not to do when your pipes are frozen

  • Do not keep the faucet closed. What you should do is to keep it open and running. This is to ensure that as the water starts to run, it will help in thawing the frozen pipe.
  • Make sure you do not use an open flame device such as a blow torch or a kerosene heater when applying heat to the affected area. Instead use an electric heating pad and then wrap it around the pipe. You can also use a hair drying and place it facing the affected pipe.
  • Do not hesitate to call a licensed or professional plumber like myself. There is only so much you can do by applying heat. Make sure you get someone who is trained and professional to help you out.

Take preventive measures to ensure it does not happen again. As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. This is very true when dealing with situations like frozen pipes around your home. It is much better to prevent it from happening than to deal with the messy and frustration issue of trying to thaw a frozen pipe.

Here are some preventive measures

  • Make sure you drain your swimming pool and water sprinkler systems using the manufacturer’s instruction.
  • Do not put antifreeze in your pipes as this is harmful to both humans and pets.
  • Do not keep your hoses lying around. Remove them and store them outside. Also keep your valves open so any remaining water can run out and not remain there.
  • Look around your homes and locate areas where supply lines are located. Make sure you take note of the ones that are located where in unheated areas. These pipes should be insulated to prevent them freezing.
  • If you have water supply lines in your garage, always keep the doors closed.
  • Keep your kitchen doors open to allow warm air circulate.
  • Remember to keep the temperature on your thermostat set to the same temperature day and night. This is to ensure that your pipes do not burst.

Frozen pipes can be a huge pain. Hopefully with the tips and ideas in this article, you know what not to do and how to prevent it from happening.