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Bailey Brothers Plumbing

Prevent and Safely Thaw Frozen Water Pipes

In the Yukon and Oklahoma City area, winter temperatures can drop low enough for the water lines in your home or business to freeze. Fortunately, Bailey Brothers Plumbing can offer solutions to prevent or thaw frozen pipes.

When a Water Pipe Freezes

How do you tell if your water line has frozen? If the outside temperature is below freezing and you can only get a small amount of water out of your faucet, you probably have a frozen pipe. If you’re lucky, the pipe will thaw before further damage is done. Unfortunately, sometimes this doesn’t happen, and the pipe breaks. This is because the ice inside tries to expand, which pushes water toward the faucet. Since the faucet is closed, the pressure between the ice and the faucet builds until the pipe bursts. A broken water pipe can cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage before it’s even noticed. That’s why it’s so important to prevent water lines from freezing, and to carefully thaw frozen pipes.

Prevent Frozen Water Lines

Before the weather gets cold, insulate water pipes and supply lines in areas of your home that are unheated: basement or crawl space, garage, attic, inside cabinets. Products such as foam “sleeves” or even newspaper will provide some protection from the cold. When the temperature drops, keep your garage doors closed if there are water pipes there. If your kitchen or bathroom is supplied by an at-risk water line, let water drip or trickle from the faucet, and open the cabinets under the sink. For better freeze-prevention, our expert technicians can install a heating device directly to your pipes. We can even move pipes and supply lines away from unheated areas of your home to further reduce the risk of freezing.

Pipe Thawing

If a pipe in your home freezes, the first thing to do is keep the affected faucet open. Letting water run through will help melt the ice and reduce the amount of pressure that builds up. Freezing often happens along exterior walls or near your home’s foundation, so if you can’t find or access the blockage it’s best to call the professionals at Bailey Brothers Plumbing. If you can find the frozen area of the pipe, however, you can apply heat to thaw it. A hair dryer or heating pad will provide direct heat, or you can use a space heater to warm the whole room. Don’t use any type of heating source with an open flame, like a blowtorch or propane heater. Once your faucet returns to full water pressure, you’ll know your pipe is thawed. In the unfortunate event that a pipe breaks, our technicians can quickly repair it and get your water back on.

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