Frozen water pipes are a common occurrence in the cold weather of the winter season, and preventing frozen water pipes is smarter than waiting until they freeze and having to thaw them out or repair your broken water pipes.
When water freezes, it expands, and this expansion can not only cause you have no water, it can expand enough to burst your water pipes, and then you are looking at water damage, and possibly expensive plumbing repairs.
Preventing Frozen Water Pipes
Heat tape and pipe insulation to prevent water pipes from freezing.
Frozen water pipe prevention begins with proper insulation and/or heat tape. First of all, you have to find out where the water pipes are exposed to cold weather and freezing air flow. Freezing cold air flow is the number on cause of frozen plumbing pipes.
Heat tape, like easy heat brand heat tape, can be installed using electrical tape along the side of any water pipes that are exposed to cold air. Once the heat tape is installed, you can wrap foam or fiberglass pipe insulation around the water pipes to keep the cold air off of them, while keeping the heat tape heat in.
Let a faucet drip for frozen water pipe prevention.
If for some reason, you cant get heat tape or insulation on your pipes, let a faucet drip slightly. Letting a faucet drip is a proven way to prevent your water pipes from freezing, as moving water will not freeze as easily as still water.
Enclose your crawlspace or basement from any drafts.
Cold air flow is the enemy when you are trying to prevent frozen pipes. Seal all cracks, insulate your crawlspace, and make sure there are no drafts around the plumbing pipes. If you have mobile home or trailer, make sure the skirting is air-tight and the underneath of the traile is insulated and covered with plastic wrap. Make sure any pipes exposed under the trailer are protected with heat tape and pipe insulation.
Remove your hose from the outdoor hose spigot in cold weather!
Every year, I replace countless how spigots because people were careless and left the hose attached during the winter. This makes it so that the spigot cannot drain, and the water trapped in the spigot can easily freeze and rupture.
Thawing out frozen water pipes.
If your pipes are already frozen, thaw them out with a space heater, or electric blow dryer, then insulate or heat tape them as soon as possible. If the pipes have already split or burst, turn off the water and call a plumber.