Your home's plumbing is an integral part of your everyday life, but the freezing winter weather can cause the water within your plumbing system to freeze, which can cause pipes to burst. This can cause severe water damage and promote mold and mildew growth, which can be expensive and complicated to clean up. Thankfully, there are a number of things that you can do to ensure that your plumbing stays in good working order until the temperature warms up once again.
Perhaps the most important, yet one of the easiest, things that you can do to maintain your plumbing's temperature is install pipe insulation. This is a specialized type of insulation that can be found at most hardware stores, and is cut so that it fits around your pipes. Simply cut sections to size and either use the self-adhesive strips or duct tape to secure the insulation to all sections of your plumbing that is exposed,
Another easy thing that you can do to help prevent your plumbing from freezing, especially in the kitchen or bathroom, is to open the cabinets underneath the sink or anywhere else with exposed plumbing. This allows the warmer air of the kitchen and bathroom to circulate around the pipes, helping to prevent them from dipping below freezing.
Water Heater Maintenance
In order to ensure that your hot water keeps flowing as it should, you should have your sediment cleaned out of your water heater, the anode rod checked (and replaced if necessary), and all other maintenance tasks done by a licensed plumber well in advance of the cold weather. This ensures that your hot water heater is working at peak effectiveness, which in turn reduces the chances of your pipes freezing due to an inadequate supply of hot water.
Let Them Drip
Water that is standing still is much easier to freeze than water that is moving, due to simple friction. This means that if you let the taps that are connected to the pipes that are at the highest risk of freezing drip overnight or anytime that the temperature dips severely below zero, you can greatly reduce the risk of your pipes freezing. Keep in mind that this is a stopgap measure, and will increase your water bills: the best thing you can do to proactively prevent your pipes from freezing during the winter is have pipe insulation installed around at risk sections.