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How to keep your home's pipes from freezing, bursting

Pipes will start to freeze when temperatures hit the mid-20s.

NORFOLK, Va. — Tom Fant, the president of Superior Plumbing in Norfolk, encourages people to cover their pipes and keep them warm when the weather drops into winter freezes.

"You got to protect them from air, wind," he said.

Fant told 13News Now pipes start to freeze and burst when temperatures drop to the mid-20s. He said a common mistake many people make is not taking the proper precautions when it gets cold.

"'It can’t happen to me!' That’s what everybody thinks, and it can happen to you," he said.

When pipes freeze, they could burst and cause major damage to your walls.

"Water damage is very bad, wood can rot, drywall has to be replaced and, of course, the plumbing has to be fixed," Fant said.

Damage from burst pipes could cost you thousands of dollars, but there are some things you can do to protect your pipes and your wallet. 

First, Fant suggested covering your pipes. He said you can insulate them or use heat tape. 

He advised people to leave their cabinet doors open to allow warm air to flow, and detach outdoor garden hoses. He said that's it’s something people tend to forget about during the winter season.

“You won’t even realize this until spring when you try to use your water hose again," he said. "Then the hydrants, particularly if they’re frost-proof, hose bibs or hydrants, they will leak underneath the house.”

Most importantly, keep your house warm. 

Fant said it's good to keep the temperature between 68 and 72 degrees.

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