With all the freezing temperatures that we’ve had here in Las Vegas, our plumbers have been busy helping our customers repair their frozen water pipes. We’ve also been getting a lot of calls about how to prevent freezing pipes. We thought it would be helpful if we put together a quick list of some of the things that you can do to keep your water pipes from freezing. If you have any questions about your plumbing system or if you’d like to talk to one of our friendly Las Vegas plumbers, just contact Yes! Air Conditioning and Plumbing today.
What Causes Frozen Pipes in Las Vegas, NV?
Most people think that it is the expansion of frozen water inside their water pipes that make them burst. That seems like a plausible explanation but it’s actually not what happens. When your water pipe freezes it creates a blockage and the continued freezing of water puts pressure against the closed end of the water pipe—normally a closed faucet. Eventually the pressure inside the water pipe causes it to burst.
How to Prevent Frozen Pipes in Las Vegas, NV
Obviously, most homeowners would rather not have their pipes freeze and explode. Here are a few things that you can do to prevent frozen pipes in Las Vegas, NV.
Insulation –Insulating the water pipes at your home in Las Vegas is one of the best ways to prevent them from potentially freezing over. There are many pipe insulation products available on the market. The important thing to look at is the R-value of the insulation you get. Generally, an R-4 value is acceptable for water pipe insulation. For hot water pipes, make sure that the insulation you use is also fire retardant. You may even want to think about insulating the pipes in your crawl spaces or attic. Locate your water pipes outside and cut the insulation to fit their particular shape. Then use tape to attach the insulation and to cover up any gaps between the pieces of insulation. This will keep air from contacting the surface of the pipe.
Heat tape –Another option to prevent freezing pipes in Las Vegas, NV is to wrap your water pipes with electric heat tape. Heat tape comes in fiberglass or silicone types. After you plug in the heat tape to an electrical outlet, you can wrap it around your water pipes to keep them warm. Generally, heat tape can automatically adjust its temperature based on the ambient temperature around it.
Thermostat – Make sure that you don’t set the thermostat in your home below 55° F at night or when you leave your house. Open cabinet doors – For pipes that are under your sinks, open any of their cabinet doors. This will allow warm air from your home to possibly keep the pipes inside from freezing.