Tips on how to prevent frozen pipes

WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) Originally posted on Dec. 27

There are several ways to keep water pipes from freezing when the weather turns severely cold.

An easy way to prevent pipes from freezing is turning on the heat.

Eyewitness News spoke with John Nicholas, an energy auditor who says it doesn't need to be cranked up to 80. Having the heat kick on every once in a while is a good way to prevent interior damage like frozen pipes.

He says you'll get uncomfortable with the heat off before you're in danger of not heating your home enough.

If you think a pipe is frozen you'll want to check other water sources in your home to see if water comes out.

Call a professional right away if you can't find the frozen pipe. They can find the source of the problem.

"If it's coming in from the crawlspace, thaw it out, heat works well if you have access to hot water you can use hot water and rags. you may use a hair dryer."

One way to help prevent frozen pipes is by running the water at just a slight drop.

Nicholas says that will be enough to keep pipes from freezing, then thawing and bursting or leaking. He says if it does happen it's contained to a small area but can easily re-freeze and destroy things like your insulation and rot your studs.

There are a few things you can do to check and see the extent of pipes freezing in your home.

"If you wake up with a frozen pipe in one fixture, go check some others, see if it's just that one fixture or if its several. If its several you're probably having a problem where the water is coming in."

Nicholas says this is more of an issue in sheds or similar structures that have running water. That's because they typically don't have as much insulation and protection from the cold.

He says it is a good idea to disconnect any water from those structures in cold weather.