If you find one or more frozen water lines in your home, take care of the problem as quickly as you can. Frozen water lines and pipes can burst without notice. If the lines break beneath your floors or in another place you can't gain access to, the damage can be catastrophic. Learn why and how you should repair your frozen water pipes below.
How Much Damage Can Frozen Pipes Cause?
If you have PVC or copper water pipes in your home, you might not worry too much about the lines if they freeze or ice up. You may think PVC or copper is strong enough to hold up to freezing temperatures and water. However, almost any type of plumbing pipe can freeze during the cold season, including PVC, copper, and cast iron.
Frozen water can expand inside the pipes and cause them to crack, break open, or burst. Broken water pipes can allow water to travel throughout your home. Water may soak through the wooden planks supporting your floors, or water can build up inside the cavities of your walls, ceiling, and attic. Your home could become overwhelmed by mold growth, bacteria, and even wood rot.
Don't take any chances with the frozen water pipes in your home. Call a plumber for repairs today.
How Do You Access and Repair Frozen Water Pipes?
A plumbing repair contractor can use infrared lamps to thaw out the water pipes in your home. The heat created by the lamps can penetrate solid surfaces, such as walls and floors, very easily. After the pipes thaw, a contractor may suggest you place lamps in the house to keep the pipes from freezing later.
If a contractor can't thaw out the pipes with lamps, they may need to access the pipes directly. A plumber may create a small opening near or over the pipes to access and thaw them. If a plumber notices defects in the pipes, such as excessive corrosion or hairline cracks, ask them to replace the pipes immediately.
It may be possible for you to upgrade the piping in your home during this time. If you choose to upgrade the lines, a contractor may suggest you use a stronger PVC brand or stainless steel as the replacement. You want to use piping that holds up well under freezing conditions.
For more details about thawing, repairing, and replacing your frozen water pipes, consult a plumbing contractor.