Massachusetts is among the top 20 coldest states in the U.S., with temperatures dropping to 16 degrees Fahrenheit and below in winter, as reported by the World Population Review. Considering that pipes begin to freeze at 20 degrees Fahrenheit, you should practice safety measures to keep the temperatures in your plumbing system significantly higher. This will not only help prevent the freezing of pipes but will also save your home from the possible water damage that may occur from burst pipes. Here are five handy ways to prevent frozen pipes in MA.
Insulate Your Outdoor Water Pipes
Since outdoor pipes are more vulnerable to low temperatures, you may need to do some extra work when it comes to preventing freezing. To prevent frozen pipes, ensure you insulate all exterior pipes, including the walls that hold them. If there are any cracks in the walls, be sure to seal them using the right insulating materials. You can also insulate the pipes using foam pipe sleeves or pipe wraps, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
Set Thermostats at 65 degrees and above
To help protect your water pipes from freezing and bursting, it is recommended that you maintain your thermostat at 68 degrees Fahrenheit and above. This will help in keeping your house warm and prevent water damage that may occur in winter from frozen pipes. While setting the thermostat lower when you’re asleep or away helps save money on your energy bills, it can cause your pipes to freeze, says the Consumer Reports National Research Center (CRNRC).
Automate Your Plumbing System
No matter what safety measures you put in place in winter, the temperatures in your pipes may, at some point, drop below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that you should have more sophisticated measures in place such as installing a smart plumbing system. Some of the gadgets that you can use to achieve this goal include:
- Temperature sensors to alert you whenever temperatures in pipes approach the minimum allowable point
- Thermostats that you can control remotely
- Automatic shut-off in case of a water leakage
- Backup power supply to keep the heating system running in the event of an outage
Although it may seem expensive to install smart technology in your plumbing system, the overall long-term costs will be lower considering it will help protect your home from water damage.
Disconnect Outdoor Hoses
Outdoor hoses are also at risk of freezing, which may in turn cause an increase in internal pressure and result in bursting. If connected to the indoor pipes, such hoses can transfer the pressure into the indoor pipes and cause them to burst too. To prevent all this, ensure you drain and disconnect outdoor hoses and insulate the outdoor spigots.
Keep Faucets Trickling
Water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that at higher temperatures, water in the pipes will stay in liquid form until the temperatures drop significantly. The good news is that you can help prevent your pipes from freezing by running water through them, especially those that are in the exterior parts of your home. Even a little trickling from a faucet connected to a vulnerable pipe can go a long way in keeping the temperatures stable, per the Department of Fire Services, MA. To help prevent waste, collect the trickling water, and store it for later use.
Freezing temperatures can create major issues with your plumbing system due to frozen and burst pipes. Use these tips to avoid frozen pipes and water damage during winter. For extra peace of mind, purchase the right home insurance coverage. For more information on homeowners insurance coverage, contact the team at CAV Insurance, serving Wellesley, Weston, and neighboring cities in Massachusetts.