As the winter months approach, many people will be dealing with frozen pipes. This leaves the question what to do if pipes freeze? And a lot of the time, many people don’t know the answer. But that’s okay because in this article we are going to talk through everything that you need to know about when pipes freeze.
How To Know
There are some telltale signs that your pipes have frozen. These can include the following:
- If you turn your taps on and nothing comes out
- Lack of running water
- Frost on the pipe
- Freezing temperature
Remember, your pipe cannot be frozen if it is not cold enough outside to freeze. So before you assume that your pipe is frozen, you might want to check this. These are four of the signs that your pipes might be frozen, so these are what you want to be looking out for. Once you have determined that they are frozen, you need to know what to do if pipes freeze.
What To Do
There are three steps that you need to take when your pipes have frozen.
- Find the stop valve and turn it off
- Open all the cold taps, not the hot ones
- Call a registered plumber
You should never turn on the hot taps if your pipes are frozen. You might think that this is a good idea because heat melts cold. But, if you do this, your hot water cylinder may collapse if the pipes that are leading to it have been frozen. For this reason, it is always the best option to only open your hot taps.
Calling a registered plumber is always going to be the smart thing to do. You need someone who is trained in the field to advise you on what is best to do. They will be able to help you solve the problem if you are in any doubt about how to sort this problem.
How To Thaw Them
If you are going to attempt to thaw your pipes yourself, you need to make sure you know how to do this properly. It is not a hard job to do, but if you do it wrong, it could lead to a host of problems within your water pipes. So, you should make sure that you follow the steps below.
- Do not turn on your immersion heater or central heating boiler
- Check for any leaking joints or bursts
- Gently heat any frozen section with a hairdryer or a warm cloth
You should never use a direct flame to do this job as it is dangerous. Only use a warm cloth or a hairdryer and make sure that the heat is not too high. Be sure to have checked for leaks before you do this to avoid any further problems.
If you have started the process, but you are in any doubt about the results, contact a registered plumber to come and assist you.
We hope that you have found this article helpful and feel more informed about what to do if pipes freeze.