Frozen Pipes: How to avoid it and how to thaw them

Why do pipes freeze?

Even when the taps are not turned on, there is typically some water in your pipes. When the temperature drops, this water could freeze. You may not have access to flowing water due to your frozen pipes. Additionally, they then run the risk of bursting and flooding your house.

How to thaw frozen pipes

In the event that your water pipes have burst, close the stop cock and call a licenced plumber. If you are unsure about the location of your stop cock, contact your water provider.

You could attempt to defrost your pipes manually if they are simply frozen. Before doing any plumbing jobs, be sure you are safe and sure about what you are doing. Get in touch with a plumber if you’re not sure. If you do attempt any plumbing problems and need extra parts make sure that you are getting your plumbing supplies from somewhere such as PlumbHQ, where all products are WRAS approved and of high quality.

Here are some simple ways to thaw frozen pipes:

Turning on taps

  1. It relieves pressure on the system when turning the taps on in your home. Additionally, it may display the location of the frozen pipe.
  2. You should call a plumber to examine if water doesn’t flow from many taps. However, if the issue only affects one tap, you might decide to deal with the frozen pipe on your own.
  3. The pipes that are most likely to freeze are those outside or in unheated areas like attics. To discover the area that has to be thawed, you might be able to work your way back from the impacted tap.

Turning up the heat

If the frozen pipe is difficult to access or you don’t know where it is:

  1. Consider turning your heating up. Your home’s air temperature increase may be sufficient to melt frozen pipes.
  2. Open up cabinets and loft hatches to allow warm air to travel around your pipes.
  3. For interior spaces that are not heated, such as garages or lofts, you might utilise a portable heater. Don’t leave a space heater unattended if you use one.

Applying heat to frozen pipes

  1. You might try heating the pipe directly if it is exposed.
  2. Find the frozen piece of the pipe by first feeling along it.
  3. The pipe needs to be carefully warmed. Use a hairdryer if you can. If you can’t plug one in, you might cover the frozen portion of the pipe with a warm cloth.
  4. Use caution with open flames such as a blowtorch. You might melt the pipe by boiling the water, which would blow your pipes apart.

How to avoid frozen pipes

There are so many simple steps you can take to prevent your pipes from freezing:

  • Insulate your pipes and water tank by wrapping pipes with sponge covers, insulate your water tanks especially if they are found in colder places such as a loft.
  • When you are away from your property leave the heating on so that the air is kept warm, which will stop internal pipes from freezing.
  • Allow warm air to circulate by leaving cabinet and loft doors open.
  • If your taps are running then this means it is harder for the water to freeze, so having them running slightly will help to keep the pipes less frozen.
  • Draining your water system, especially if you think you’re going to be away from your property.

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