How to Thaw Frozen Pipes

If you turn on a faucet and only a trickle comes out, suspect frozen pipes. Likely places for frozen pipes include against exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation.

Follow these steps.

Keep the faucet open. As you treat the frozen pipe and the frozen area begins to melt, water will begin to flow. Running water through the pipe will help melt ice in the pipe.

Apply heat.

Use an electric heating pad wrapped around the section of frozen pipe, or heat with an electric hair dryer.  Use a portable space heater (kept away from flammable materials), or wrap frozen pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device. Apply heat until full water pressure is restored. If you are unable to locate the frozen area, if the frozen area is not accessible, or if you can not thaw the pipe, call C&R Plumbing.

Check other faucets.

Check all other faucets in your home to find out if you have additional frozen pipes. If one pipe freezes, others may freeze, too.


How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors, therefore allowing warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Also, be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.

Let your faucet drip.

When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. This is because running water through the pipe, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.

Turn up your thermostat.

Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. Consequently, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home. Most importantly, set it to a temperature no lower than 55° F.