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Insurance Advisors' Newsletter
January 2016

Tips to Prevent Water Damage During
 Colorado’s Colder Temperatures

By Susan Cormier for Insurance Advisors

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As we head into Colorado’s coldest months, we thought it might be good to share information about frozen pipes and water damage. We’re sure you want to avoid any preventable water damage, some of which can be expensive to repair.

Hopefully, you spent some time this fall, sealing and/or insulating cracks, holes and other openings on your home’s exterior walls. And we’re sure you’ve already disconnected your outside hoses.

Here some additional steps you can take to protect your pipes from freezing, provided by the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety:

·         Insulate accessible pipes using pipe insulation that can be found at your local hardware store.

·         Keep all exterior entry, exit and garage doors to unheated spaces closed as much as possible during the winter months.

·         If temperatures drop lower than usual and any pipes are located adjacent to exterior walls or within base cabinets or in closets, leave the cabinet/closet doors open or use a fan to increase warm air circulation around the pipes.

·         When extreme cold weather is predicted, let all faucets drip to prevent freezing of the water inside the pipe or to relieve pressure buildup in the pipes between the ice blockage and the faucet if freezing has occurred. It’s the pressure buildup that actually causes bursting pipes.

·         Install a water leak detection system, so that you will receive an alert if a water leak is detected. These systems are usually available at your local hardware or plumbing supply store.

·         If your home is going to be unoccupied for a period of time, be sure to shut off the water supply, especially when colder weather is expected. You might even want to drain your water supply system before leaving the home unoccupied.

 If you suspect that your pipes are frozen, the insurance institute recommends that you turn on each water supply faucet individually (both hot and cold) to ensure that there is a steady stream of water present. If the flow of water is slowed, or worse, there is no flow, then it is likely that your pipe has frozen.

If that’s the case, Identify the blockage, which will probably by the area of your home that has the most exposure. Then, use a blow dryer to heat the supply line, while leaving the faucet open. Continue heating the pipe until there is a steady flow of water. A safety warning: do NOT use an open flame torch to heat the line!

As always, Insurance Advisors wishes you all the best as we head into these colder months. Please do not hesitate to call us at 720.210.9898 if you have any questions about your insurance needs.

 





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