Tinton Falls, NJ, (February 17, 2014) –A.J. Perri, the leading heating, cooling and plumbing company in central New Jersey, wants consumers to take steps during extreme weather to ensure frozen pipes don’t create major problems.
Kevin Perri, Vice President of A.J. Perri, states, “Pipes can freeze if they’re on an outside wall and aren’t exposed to warmer indoor air.  If a pipe freezes, the frozen water exerts over 2,000 pounds per square inch of pressure on the pipe, which is enough to cause almost any pipe to split wide open. Frozen pipes can be difficult to thaw safely and are a major repair if they burst.”

Water that escapes through a burst pipe does not stop flowing until it is turned off at the valve, which can lead to flooding and high repair bills if the water causes damage to cabinets, flooring, and foundations.

The best way to prevent pipes from freezing is to keep them warm. 

  1.  When the outdoor temperatures plummet, leave a small stream of warm water running from all fixtures on outside walls.
  2.  Insulate pipes that are in unconditioned areas, such as the garage or crawlspace.  Pipe insulation is easy to install and readily available at hardware stores. Use inexpensive outdoor hose bib insulators for exterior spigots.
  3.  Open cabinet doors for plumbing fixtures on outside walls.
  4.  Ensure crawlspace access holes are securely closed and sealed.
  5.  Locate your main water shut-off valve in case of emergency such as a burst pipe. It’s likely under the kitchen sink.

If you do experience frozen pipes, the first thing you should do is shut off the water at the main valve.  Then, rather than attempting to thaw the pipe on your own, you should call a licensed plumber.  While you’re waiting for the plumber to arrive, remove anything that can be damaged by water from the area. 

“A plumber knows how to thaw a pipe safely and can help keep your home’s structure and electrical system safe in case of a burst pipe.  That’s knowledge an average homeowner doesn’t possess and so frozen and burst pipe repairs are best left to professionals,” continues Perri.

With more than a month left of this extreme winter, every homeowner needs to be on guard against frozen and burst pipes.