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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How to Find Your Pipes in a Winter Storm

3/11/2021 (Permalink)

winter storm damage restoration Fort Worth When a winter storm damages your Fort Worth home or business, contact the experts at SERVPRO for professional restoration services.

When a freeze warning is issued, one of the first things we do is wrap pipes outdoor pipes. Many Fort Worth homeowners experienced pipe damage during the recent winter storms. Some now realize that it’s just as important to know where the pipes are for indoor plumbing.

Because we are used to a warmer client, many Texans are caught off guard by extreme cold. Part of winter weather preparedness is knowing where to locate pipes so you can monitor for problems, so we put together this quick guide!

How to Prepare for Pipe Freezing

We have no control over the weather, but we can take measures to prevent common plumbing issues caused by the cold. 

  1. Disconnect garden hoses and wrap outdoor pipes and spigots.
  2. Add insulation to areas where pipes are more exposed to the cold (attics, plumbing at exterior walls, etc.) Apply heat tape to the most vulnerable pipes.
  3. Let faucets drip when temps are below freezing for prolonged periods.
  4. Keep the house warm and the cabinets open under sinks to allow heat to enter the space underneath.
  5. Know where your main shut-off valve is and how to shut it off.

How to Locate Frozen Pipes

We can get a rough idea of how plumbing routes by locating where the water supply enters the house, then how it distributes among the kitchen, bathrooms, water heater, utility room, basement, etc.

One sign of frozen pipes is low water pressure from the tap. First, confirm that water flow issues aren’t isolated to just your property. If the flow is abnormal due to a community water outage, the problems will be difficult to diagnose.

Locating frozen pipes is a process of elimination. First look for ice or frost on pipes that are located in the most unsheltered areas (outside walls, outside walls, crawlspaces, attics, basements, etc.)

Next, turn on faucets. If some have a stronger flow while others don’t, this narrows down where the freeze could be. If all faucets are affected, freezing may be at the main water source for the house.

The hope is that the pipes will thaw out without incident. It’s best for pipes to thaw out gradually and slowly from warm air. Some experts recommend leaving taps open to regulate pressure and allow warm air to melt the ice in pipes.

SERVPRO is Always On Call

Fingers crossed that your pipes survive the winter unscathed, but if they do leak or burst, it’s vitally important that you shut off the main water supply to prevent further damage.

 In addition to property recovery, SERVPRO of Fort Worth water damage restoration addresses repairs at the source of the problem. Don’t wait! Call us at (817) 589-1499.

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