BRYN MAWR, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#MyAquaAmerica–Aqua Pennsylvania (Aqua) is reminding its customers how to avoid frozen
and broken water pipes in their homes in the wake of severely cold
weather in some regions, particularly those experiencing sustained
temperatures well below freezing.
“When temperatures approach or drop to single digits, it’s important for
customers to ensure that their interior plumbing is protected from
freezing,” said Aqua Pennsylvania President Marc Lucca. “If pipes become
frozen, customers might find that they have no water—at best—or that
their pipes will burst, causing extensive and costly damage inside their
“In this weather, when customers find they have no water, in most cases,
it’s a result of pipes that have become frozen inside their homes. This
is a situation that can be easily avoided if customers know the
preventive steps they can take. The main reason pipes freeze is they are
exposed to cold air blowing from windows or openings in the exterior
wall. Sealing off those air leaks will prevent most of these instances
Lucca said that customers should use the following tips in
unheated areas of their homes when temperatures drop below
Wrap pipes with insulation material or heat tape. Wrap indoor water
meters with a blanket. Proper use of portable space heaters can also
keep exposed pipes in drafty areas from freezing.
For interior plumbing located on an outside wall such as a kitchen
sink, install heat tape or insulation material to the pipes beneath
the sink. If no small children are in the house, open cabinet doors
beneath the sink to allow the warm air in the home to reach the pipes.
- Make sure the lids on outdoor meter pits are not broken or missing.
Shut off the inside valve and drain any outside faucets
including those for lawn sprinkling systems.
When temperatures remain near 10°F, customers might want to leave a
very thin stream of water (about the diameter of a pencil) running
continuously from at least one tap—preferably the one farthest from
the meter. The additional cost of the water is cheaper than the cost
of repairing ruptured pipes.
“If a customer has the misfortune of finding they have a frozen pipe and
can locate the frozen area, they can open the nearest tap and use a
hand-held hair dryer (blow dryer) or heat tape to thaw the area,” said
Lucca. “It’s important that the tap be open so they water has somewhere
to go once the pipe is thawed.”
Lucca said if a frozen pipe doesn’t thaw within a few minutes of
applying heat, customers should call a plumber immediately. He also
advised that every customer should know where their master valve is so
that they can turn off the water to their home in case a pipe breaks
inside their home. Customers should hang a tag on the valve marked main
water shutoff. This information can be found at AquaFrozenTips.com.
Aqua Pennsylvania serves approximately 1.4 million people in 31 counties
throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Visit AquaAmerica.com
for more information, or follow Aqua on Facebook at facebook.com/MyAquaAmerica
and on Twitter at @MyAquaAmerica.