How to Protect Your Pipes from Cold Weather

With the threat of another steep drop in temperatures hanging over our heads, it’s important to ensure your home is able to face falling temperatures. One of the ways extreme cold can affect your home is by freezing your pipes, which is something that can turn into a messy and costly repair.

You might wonder if you need to replace your leaking hose bib in Seattle, WA, or whether you should buy insulation for every inch of pipe in your home. Read on for some more practical tips on how to protect your pipes from the cold:

  • Wrap up the pipes: Hose insulation is definitely worth the cost. It’s about 50 cents per linear foot to cover your pipes, and though it does add up if you have extensive systems in your home, the cost of a burst pipe will be much higher. It’s a good investment to make sure you’re keeping the pipes as protected as possible. You should also consider insulating more exposed spaces like basements, garages and attics that have pipes in them.
  • Run the water: If you’re experiencing a cold snap, leave your water on at a trickle to prevent solid ice from forming. Even if the water is cold, it will still be warmer than ice and can prevent an ice plug. This is especially important for any sinks that are served by exposed pipes.
  • Let the air flow: An easy trick to help pipes stay warmer is to open up the cupboards covering them in the bathrooms and kitchen. This way, the heated air in the home can warm the pipes more easily. On the other hand, one area to keep closed up is the garage, which lets in a lot more cold air if you leave the door open.
  • Leave the heat on: Many people turn down the temperature at night or turn off the heat while on vacation. Though these practices do save money and cut down on gas usage, it could lead to a much larger issue with a frozen pipe. If you’ll be away for a while, it’s fine to keep the heat lower, but make sure it is at least 55 degrees in your home.

So now you have your answer: you can let that hose bib in Seattle, WA leak slowly throughout the winter, but you should also stock up on pipe insulation right away.

For any of your hardware and home construction needs, make sure to visit Stewart Lumber & Hardware Co., which has served the Seattle area since 1926. With over 90 years in the industry, you can be sure that Stewart Lumber & Hardware Co. has the expertise to help you find whatever you need for jobs of any size. On top of our extensive stock of building products, we can also place custom orders if you can’t find what you need at our warehouse. Stop by today to see what we can offer—we look forward to assisting you soon with projects of any size or scope!

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