Plumber says protect your home from freezing, bursting pipes
PENSACOLA, Fla. (WEAR) —
Plumbers in Northwest Florida have been slammed fixing broken pipes. It happened to WEAR anchor Christina Leavenworth, and she learned a lot about cold weather preparations along the way.
Christina's bathroom is now covered with wet towels and tools. She followed the advice and let her faucets drip, but it wasn't enough. She went to give her daughter a bath and then heard a large amount of water running behind the wall.
She later found out two pipes burst behind the bathtub due to the cold weather.
Plumber Tim Deale repaired it Wednesday and explained, "The cold weather pushed it apart. As water freezes, it expands. It's gotta go somewhere."
It's not only Christina dealing with this. Plumbers have had full schedules fixing pipes across the region.
Deale said, "We have had pipes breaking all around town. People don't leave the water running like they should, end up having leaks flooding their houses."
He said a common mistake that Christina also made is many people allow only a trickle to come out of the faucet, but it needs to be a small stream on both the hot and cold.
Deale said, "People like to drip, drip, drip, but you also don't want to turn it wide open. Have it about half the size of a pencil. You want to have a steady stream, like that, hot and the cold."
It doesn't have to be every faucet, but any that are near an outside wall. Another good idea is to leave the cabinets open.
Deale said, "That will save you a lot of frozen pipes, especially on faucets on outside walls because heat from the house is getting inside there. "
If a pipe does burst, Deale said to turn off the water meter to stop the damage. If you don't have access, call your local utility company to see if they can do it.