< view all News

Ready For Winter?

It’s been a long time since snow was coating the ground, and though there are no signs of an early winter, it’s never too early to think about winter preparations.  The District would like to impart the following as water pipes can be particularly vulnerable to sudden prolonged cold spells.

Every school science textbook teaches that water expands as it freezes.  This exerts tremendous pressure on plastic and metal pipes.  At particularly cold times this can be so much that they can fracture and burst. And its not limited to outdoor pipes, hoses, spigots, water sprinkler lines and the like.  Unheated interior areas put pipes at risk.  Crawl space and unheated basements, attics and garages, even kitchen cabinets can be problematic. Pipes that run against exterior walls can also freeze, especially when they are poorly insulated or not insulated at all.

Take Preventive Action

  • Know where your system turn off is, just in case you need to access it in an emergency.
  • Take a look around the exterior of your house and property for potential freezing problems.
  • Have a balcony with drains? Make sure they are free from leaves and other debris that could clog them and encourage ice damming.
  • If you open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors you will be allowing  warmer air from the room to circulate around the interior plumbing. This can make the difference between free flowing and freezing pipes on cold winter nights. (Be sure to move harmful household cleaners and chemicals out of the reach of children.
  • Garages are generally unheated so keeping garage doors closed helps big time.
  • Insulate your pipes, especially in your basement with pipe sleeves or UL-listed heat tape.
  • Keep faucets slightly open.
  • Wrap pipes carefully. The ends should be butted tightly and joints wrapped with a proper insulating   tape.
  • Maintain the same house temperature day and evenings. Yes, you may well  receive a more costly heating bill; but if your pipes freeze, expand and burst you’ll  encounter far more costly repair bills for the plumbing, damages to the rooms they are located in… and a great deal of headaches and aggravation to boot!
  • Are you snow birding or simply traveling? Don’t turn the heat off! That’s a lock for frozen pipes. Make sure to leave the heat on no lower than 55 ºF to discourage freezing.  Never take chances with frozen pipes.
  • Close the outside hose spigot valve in your basement.