15 Jul Prevent Burst Pipes and Flooding
Winter can be a trying time for many home and business owners in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Sharp swings in temperature can cause a large array of issues from burst pipes to abnormal foundation settling, causing leaks in roofs and around windows. The most common winter issue we see during these cold snaps is flooding due to burst water pipes, so let’s take a minute to discuss preventing this issue all together.
Why Do Pipes Burst?
While technically it can happen anytime the temperature dips below freezing, pipes are more likely to burst once temperatures dip below the 20-degree mark (Farenheit). Contrary to popular belief, it is not the frozen water that ruptures the pipe, but rather the air trapped between the faucet and the expanding frozen water that creates the pressure necessary to rupture a copper pipe. Once this occurs, the water is going to flood out of the break until the water flow to that particular pipe is stopped. This can lead to a number of issues down the road if not cleaned properly, including wood rot, mildew, and potentially toxic mold.
Prevent Your Home from Flooding
In order to minimize the possibility of having to deal with a flooded home due to a burst water line, here are a few measures you can take to lower your chances. First, determine if your home is equipped with a main water shutoff. These are typically found where your main water supply from the street enters the home. If your home is not equipped with a main shutoff there will be a shutoff located at your water meter, though they often require a special tool to turn off and on. Next you want to determine if your home has copper, CPVC or PEX pipes for your water supply lines. Copper is more likely to rupture in cold conditions, so if your lines are copper make sure they are insulated with approved water supply line pipe insulation. This is a small step to avoid major issues, and worth it’s weight in gold. Lastly, and most importantly, any time temperatures in your area dip below 25 degrees it is a good idea to drip all faucets that have copper supply lines. Even a tiny, slow drip can provide the pressure relief necessary to prevent the line from splitting and consequently flooding your home.
TriRes can Help
As always, the TriRes team hopes everyone is staying dry and warm this winter. If you do have any questions about how we can repair your home or business after flooding due to a burst water pipe please give us a call 24/7 at 919.933.9955.