What to do when you have frozen pipes

A frozen water pipe is no joke. Left frozen for too long, the pipe can crack and cause thousands of dollars’ worth of water damage to your property. Even if you have the appropriate insurance, that’s still going to cost you an excess and an increase in premiums later down the line. It’s essential then that if you discover a frozen water pipe, you tend to it immediately. To help you out, Sunnyvale SOS has put together this quick guide telling you what to do when you have frozen pipes.

Locate the frozen pipe

The clearest indicator that you have a frozen pipe is if your faucets don’t run when you turn them on. To identify where the frozen pipe(s) is, place your hand against the wall and work it along until you come to a colder patch. There may be more than one cold patch to contend with.

Try to relieve the water pressure in the pipe

Once you’ve located the cold patch, turn the faucets closest to it on and flush the toilet. This should hopefully relieve the pressure and act as a primary preventative measure against cracks and floods.

Heat your property

Open all doors in your property and turn the heating up. The hotter the interior of your property, the warmer your walls and the warmer the pipe. In some minor cases this will be enough to thaw the pipe.

Carefully heat the affected pipe

If heating your home doesn’t do the job, you’ll need to warm the pipe directly. This needs to be done in a SAFE manner. Don’t go searching for a blow torch or gas heater, just use a bundle of towels, a heat pad, a portable heater, or a hairdryer. Constant heat applied to the pipe will hopefully thaw the pipe before it’s damaged.

Get professional assistance

If you’re unable to thaw the pipe yourself, or if you discover the pipe to be damaged after it’s thawed, don’t hesitate to contact a professional to provide you with assistance.

No matter how well prepared you are, accidents will happen. Even the most conscientious homeowner can still experience frozen pipes and, worse, the damage they can lead to. If you’re based in Sunnyvale, California and your pipes have burst due to freezing, contact Sunnyvale SOS and we’ll provide any water restoration services you might need.