With the winter comes colder temperatures, wind and inclement weather. While all these factors require you to bundle up to keep yourself protected, they also highlight a need for you to protect your home from the harshness of winter. This is particularly true when it comes to your home's plumbing system. Preventing your pipes from freezing in the winter is key to preventing a winter plumbing emergency.

The Trouble With Frozen Pipes

When it comes to frozen pipes, the first problem will typically be limited water flow. A faucet that once produced a rapid water flow will turn into more of a trickle. However, the real trouble of frozen pipes doesn't generally come to the surface right away.

Overtime, frozen pipes can burst. Depending on the location of the pipe you could have a serious flood on your hands. In addition to water removal, you will also be looking at a high cost to repair any structural damage the water has caused, as well as any damage to your personal belongings. Not only with these types of repairs come with a high cost, but they can also take a long time to complete.

What You Can Do

Avoiding this type of scenario begins with prevention. Here are some things you can do.

Close it up – If your home has pipes that run through a crawl space, make certain that you are keeping the vents in this area closed during the winter. Keeping the vents closed will keep the temperature inside the crawl space warmer, decreasing the risk of a freeze.

Look for leaks – At the start of winter do an exterior inspection of your home. Inspect those areas where you have plumbing installed in the exterior walls. Look for any signs of cracks in this area. The exterior wall helps keep the area insulated and warmer. However, a crack will allow the cold air to flow in, increasing the risk of a freeze.

In The Event Of An Emergency

If your pipes freeze, one of the first things you need to do is shut off the main water supply. Preventing water from flowing through the pipes can help minimize damage. In the event that your pipe has not busted, there are a number of techniques you can follow to try and thaw out the pipe.

However, should these techniques not work or if your pipe has already busted, it's imperative that you contact a plumbing professional, such as Puget Sound Plumbing, right away. A plumber can help assess the situation and prevent greater damage.

When it comes to protecting your home, you hold the key. Make certain you are protecting your pipes from a winter plumbing emergency.