January 16, 2019 | Barb Huntley
Frozen pipes are not the fresh start you are looking for this year. Living in Alaska, you should know that your pipes are susceptible to freezing. But, do you know what to do if they become frozen?
 
The first sign of frozen pipes is your home is not getting any water. If a pipe is frozen your toilet, sinks, or tub won’t produce water. If this occurs your first step should be to turn off the water. That way when you go to examine your pipes you won’t suddenly flood your house if a frozen pipe isn’t the issue. To defrost the pipes on your own you can use a hair dryer or space heater. Place either of those items next to a pipe to thaw them. Be warned – this could take up to a full day to defrost with this method. When you are attempting to thaw a frozen pipe make sure the faucet connected to that pipe is open so when the water melts it has a place to be let out.
 
If your DIY efforts are unsuccessful or there are signs a pipe has burst it’s time to call in a professional. A plumber can come in and assess the situation in your pipes.
 
To avoid frozen pipes in the future, adequately insulated pipes are necessary. Installing all exterior pipes or pipe heating cable should do the trick. Another option is to leave your faucets on slightly to let them drip. A dripping faucet allows the movement of water in your pipes throughout the day which helps avoid stagnant water that is more susceptible to freezing.
 
Frozen pipes aren’t fun, but they are a reality of living in Alaska. Make sure you are taking the proper steps to insulate your pipes and check on them regularly to prevent future disasters.
 
 
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