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Frozen Pipes Causing You Water Damage? | Call the Professionals

The cold season is upon us, which means it’s that time of year when some homes experience frozen water pipes that can end up costing thousands of dollars in damages and repairs.

We want to help you avoid these costly damages by ensuring that you understand what causes frozen water pipes and providing steps that you can take to prevent this from happening. We will also tell you a few things you can do to contain water damage if a frozen pipe bursts in your home.

What Causes Frozen Water Pipes?

Experts say that freezing in water pipes occurs when temperatures in the home go below 20 degrees for more than 3 hours. Such conditions are enough to cause freezing in most water supply and drain pipes made of plastic or metal. Once the freezing occurs, ice in the pipes exerts pressure on the water inside, which does not compress (according to the law of hydraulics). The result is usually ruptured pipes.

Ruptured pipes can cause all kinds of disasters, including serious water damage. Water from the pipes will end up in your home, soaking your floors and walls and potentially damaging your valuables.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

There are several steps you can take to prevent frozen pipes in your home. Of course, it all starts with keeping the home warm in the cold season. Make sure all doors and windows are shut and sealed, cover and insulate all exterior faucets and ensure that all exposed plumbing in the garage, attics, outside buildings and crawlspaces are sealed.

In addition to that:

  • When temperatures outside drop below the freezing point, open interior faucets slightly. Keeping water moving through the pipes significantly reduces the chance of freezing.
  • Make sure to drain all water from sprinkler and swimming pool supply lines.
  • On days when a hard freeze is likely, don’t leave the heater turned off if you will not be home. Set it lower, but keep the heat on.
  • Open cabinets under the sink to allow heated air to circulate. This helps keep the plumbing warmer.
  • Unhook the water hoses from the exterior of the home and bring them inside. This will help maintain their life.
  • Know where freezes are likely to occur, and watch these locations closely. Common locations for frozen pipes include under the sink, the outside wall, attics, garages, swimming pool supply lines, water sprinkler lines, crawl spaces and basements.

Steps to Follow if Freezing Occurs

If you turn on the faucet and water doesn’t come out or the pressure is suspiciously low, the pipes might be frozen, but not yet ruptured. In that case:

  • Open a faucet supplied by the frozen line (even if you’ve not located the location of the frozen pipes).
  • Identify the location of frozen pipes (the area will usually be frozen or have ice on it).
  • Warm the suspected frozen pipes with portable heaters or hair dryers. Never use an open flame.

If a frozen pipe bursts:

  • Step 1: Turn off the water supply at the main shut-off valve.
  • Step 2: Call us immediately. Our water damage restoration team will arrive there in no time.
  • Step 3: As you wait, use water buckets to catch the dripping water, make a hole in the ceiling to let water out, turn off all electronics/appliances and open all drawers, cabinet doors and closets to enhance drying.

Contact Us

If you suspect frozen pipes in your home or are already experiencing water damage, call us right away at 918-461-1280. We serve Bixby, Broken Arrow, Claremore, Jenks, Owasso, Sand Springs and Tulsa. Our phone lines are open 24/7.