Frozen Pipes Repair
The winter holidays tend to bring surges of customers to Long Island and New York Metropolitan Area businesses, which can sometimes distract business owners from keeping their eye on the health of their pipes and plumbing system. Don’t let this oversight happen to you! Pipes, just like people, need to stay warm in winter. Why? Pipes contain water and in freezing temperatures, water both freezes and expands — when this happens, even the strongest commercial plumbing system is in danger of having a pipe burst. Pipes flow four to eight gallons a minute, so if even just one frozen pipe were to burst, your property damage could cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars. And even if your business shuts down for the winter, frozen pipes can still crack, split, and burst, causing major flooding and damage in the spring.
Most Vulnerable Pipes
Pipes that are directly exposed to the elements are the most vulnerable to freezing, including:
- Water Sprinkler Lines
- Outdoor Hoses
- Plumbing in Unheated Interiors
- Outdoor Pipes With No Insulation
How to Prevent Frozen Pipes
It’s important to take preventative measures against frozen pipes and the plumbing issues that can result.
- Insulate your external and/or exposed pipes with appropriate pipe insulation materials to keep cold temperatures from solidifying the water. Be sure to do this before the winter weather sets in and starts bringing temperatures down.
- Insulate any water storage units inside and outside of your commercial property.
- Keep the water moving in your pipes to prevent it from freezing. Do this by opening the faucet just enough to allow a very small trickle of cold water to flow out.
- If it’s safe to do so, consider opening the under-sink cabinet to allow for warm air to circulate around your pipes.
- Make sure that basement windows, doors, and crawl spaces are properly sealed, insulated, and weather-stripped.
- Disconnect and drain all outdoor hoses and water spigots before the winter season begins.
- Consider replacing drafty windows and doors.
- In colder areas, consider installing storm windows and protective plastic coverings.
Signs of Frozen Pipes
While foresight and proper maintenance are crucial for the health and well-being of your pipes and plumbing system, it also helps to be on alert for any of these signs that you may have a frozen pipe.
- Persistent plumbing issues
- Pipes covered in ice
- Damp drywall
- Low water pressure
- Unusual odors from your pipes
- Unusual sounds from your pipes
Thawing Your Pipes
It may be hard to pinpoint exactly where your frozen pipe(s) may be located, especially those that are behind building walls with limited ability to access. Exterior pipelines, on the other hand, maybe easier to locate. Should you be able to identify your problemed pipe, you may be able to get your water flowing again with these following tips:
- Apply heat to the frozen pipe using a hairdryer, space heater, or by carefully applying warm towels or a heating pad.
- Keep the faucet running while you warm the pipes to allow the ice to not only thaw but to trickle out.
- Continue to apply heat until your water pressure is back to normal.
While these are some tips you can attempt yourself, it’s always best to call in an experienced professional. And remember, it’s important to act quickly to limit any potential/further damage. Our skilled technicians at CityWide Sewer & Drain are ready to take your call 24/7. We’re standing by with exceptional customer service that is our commitment to all of our Long Island and New York Metropolitan Area customers.