Redefining Restoration

How To Prevent Your Pipes From Freezing

As water freezes, it actually expands. In fact, did you know that when a gallon of water freezes, it expands up to 9% bigger than its original size? This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever container it is in, including metal or plastic pipes. No matter how strong these pipes are, expanding water can cause them to break. If you have ever seen a frozen soda can that swelled up, split or exploded, you have seen the worst outcome of expanding frozen water.

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Why Do Pipes Freeze?

Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold or run against exterior walls. While there are several reasons that make these pipes most vulnerable, the three main reasons pipes freeze are:

1. Drastic change in temperature
2. Poorly insulated pipes
3. Thermostat set too low

Can I Prevent Pipes from Freezing?

The good news is that there are several things you can do to prevent pipes from freezing.  During times of cold weather, try these recommendations:

• Insulate pipes, especially those located in a crawl space or attic
• Use pipe sleeves, heat tape or heat cable on exposed water pipes
• Caulk or insulate cracked seals around pipes
• Open cabinet doors leading to exposed pipes or pipes close to exterior walls
• Use an indoor shut-off valve to drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets
• Keep your thermostat at the same temperature day and night
• Keep the garage door closed

What if I Have a Frozen Pipe?

If you suspect you have frozen pipe, for example, there is frost on the pipe or you turn on a faucet and either very little or no water comes out, here are a few things you can do to try to thaw it:

• Try to locate the section of pipe that is frozen and unfreeze it yourself
• Common sources for unfreezing are either a hair dryer or space heater
• Turn off the water at the main shut off valve in the house
• Leave water faucets turned on
• Do not use any electrical appliances in standing water

Know When to Call a Professional

If you are unable to locate the frozen section of the pipe, unable to thaw it yourself or if the frozen area is not accessible, it may be time to call Van Rooy Restoration. Our experts can help unfreeze your pipes or answer any questions you have about protecting your home’s plumbing.

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#1 Cause of Water Damage?

Several factors can cause water damage in your home. Some of the most common are:

• a broken dishwasher hose
• washing machine overflow
• broken pipes or plumbing leaks
• clogged toilet
• bad weather (snow, rain, flooding)

water dripping from a rusted pipe

But the #1 cause of water damage in homes is roof leaks.

How to Identify the Source of Roof Leaks

Unfortunately a majority of us have seen the dreaded water spot on our ceiling or the water stain that extends down the wall. More than likely these stains are the result of a roof leak. Finding the cause of the roof leak can be a tricky matter. While there are some common culprits – missing shingles, roof vents, chimneys – some roof leaks are tough to locate.

To find the source of the leak requires thoroughly inspecting the roof as well as any attic space. After speaking to several homeowners, we have discovered that most are reluctant to inspect the roof themselves and for good reason. It’s definitely a safety issue and we do not recommend climbing on your roof if you are uncomfortable.

CeilingStainFromRoofLeak

 

Can I Prevent Roof Leaks?

Van Rooy Restoration recommends hiring a professional to inspect your roof on an annual basis. Most qualified contractors will offer a free inspection.  Ask for a detailed report that includes the condition of the flashing, roof covering, parapets and drainage system.

This simple act can prevent water damage into your home and a possible insurance claim!

If you suspect you have a roof leak or need help locating the cause, give us a call at Van Rooy Restoration. We can help you prevent a minor leak from causing major damage.