Plumber says protect your home from freezing, bursting pipes

Imagine coming home in these cold temperatures, hoping to relax and warm up, and instead finding your home flooded from frozen pipes that burst.

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Plumbers from around Hampton Roads are expecting to have a busy week due to the cold temperatures.

“When the temperatures get this low, pipes are going to freeze, pipes are going to burst, and all the plumbers in the city, in the Tidewater area, will get calls,” said Tom Fant, owner of Superior Plumbing.

Fant expects 10 to 20 calls in the next few days regarding busted pipes. He has four crews standing by.

“When it gets down to the mid-twenties or below they will start to freeze, they get slushy like a 7-Eleven Slurpee,” said Fant.

It doesn’t matter how new your house is, Fant said everyone is vulnerable.

“They will freeze and burst and every type of material even galvanized pipes will do this,” said Fant.

There are ways to protect your home, like leaving the cupboard doors open to your kitchen sink.

“We’ll normally leave this open in order to get the warm air from the living space on the pipes,” said Fant.

Fant said it’s also important to make sure any openings on the outside of your home are sealed to keep out the wind.

“The wind blowing in there will freeze the pipes,” said Fant. “A lot of times it’s not the temperature as much as the temperature wind combination.”

Hoses should also be detached from outside faucets.

“Leave the hose on it, it will retain that water and the hose bib (faucet) will freeze and burst,” said Fant.

Fant also said there are some tips that he doesn’t believe in.

“A lot of people say leave your faucets dripping, I do not think that’s much of a deterrent and the reason I say this is if you’ve ever seen an icicle, that is water dripping,” said Fant.

He said the worst case scenario, you have a pipe burst but you aren’t home to notice. He said if you’re leaving town and the temperatures are this cold, have your water turned off completely.

“A half inch line will dump an enormous amount of water out in 10 minutes, much less if it goes over the weekend,” said Fant.

© 2018 WVEC-TV


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