Frozen Pipes Send Homeowners out into the Cold

Residential Pipe Tracing

Consider heat trace cable for reliable pipe freeze protection.

This December hasn’t just been about holiday festivities and hot cocoa. For many, the season has taken a nasty turn. Dropping temperatures across the nation have caused mounting problems from dangerous road conditions to freezing pipes. In Nebraska, an emergency cleaning company reported as many as five calls a day for help with recovering from the damages caused by burst pipes. Many residents have had to evacuate their homes and several businesses had to close their doors.

One burst pipe case in particular in an orthopedic office caused two inches of water to spill over every square inch of the building. The office has been shut down until the water is extricated and damaged furnishings are replaced. The main concern for the facility is the prevention of mold formation. The damages are estimated to reach six figures.

Beyond the freezing temperatures, one reason for the influx in frozen pipes are people trying to save some money by turning thermostats down and closing doors to rooms that aren’t used as often. If piping runs behind the walls of the closed room, the chances of that pipe bursting are raised significantly.

Here are a few tips for keeping pipes from freezing during extreme cold weather events:

Heat trace cable installed for pipe freeze protection.

  ●  Avoid turning your thermostat down too low, even if you plan on leaving the house for a few days.

  ●  Make sure a little water is running through your pipes.

  ●  Shut the main water off if you will be away from your home for an extended period of time.

  ●  Install pipe freeze protection to pipes located on outside walls.

The best protection for your pipes is a pipe tracing or pipe freeze protection system. Choose a self-regulating heat cable that will adjust heat output in accordance with ambient temperature. This means that as the temperature drops, the heat of the cable increases, and as the temperature warms up, the heat output decreases. Many systems for home use only consume around three to five watts per foot, and maintain a safe pipe temperature.

Pipe tracing is affordable, especially when compared to the headaches, labor, and costs attached to a ruptured pipe. Heat trace systems are simple and easy to install, and will give you some peace of mind that prevention is in place to ensure you and your family get to enjoy the holidays uninterrupted. While pipe tracing can't stop all the problems caused by cold weather, at least your pipes will be safe.

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