Frozen Water Pipes
The best way to prevent water pipes from freezing is to take steps before temperatures plummet.
Before freezing temperatures arrive
- Disconnect all garden hoses and shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets.
- Drain in-ground irrigation systems according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Protect outside faucets and hose bibs with insulation. Wrapping them with newspaper or rags covered with plastic is a good resort if you don’t have molded foam-insulating covers, designed specifically for that task and frequently found in hardware sections and stores.
- Seal leaks around pipes that allow cold air to seep inside.
- Insulate pipes near outer walls, in crawl spaces, basements, garages and/or attics to guard against freezing.
- Locate your home’s water shut-off valve and make sure it works, before it’s ever needed in an emergency.
During freezing conditions
- Allow a trickle of water to drip at night from an indoor faucet, preferably one located along an exterior wall and/or farthest from where your water service connects with the main water line.
- Open cupboard doors under sinks in kitchens and bathrooms to allow more heat to reach water pipes.
- Vacationing? Have someone check your house to make sure the heat is still on and water is working properly. Or drain and shut off the water system, with the exception of indoor sprinkler systems.
If your water pipes freeze
- Please remember that you are responsible for protecting and repairing water pipes on your property should any breaks occur.
- If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, leave the faucets turned on and call a plumber.
- Never try to thaw a frozen pipe with an open flame.
- Without water and suspect a problem is at the meter? Please call the City’s Operations Center at 360-487-8177 for further assistance.