Get Winter WiseWe know the effects of icy winter weather can be a worry for home owners. That’s why we offer a comprehensive range of winter productsto keep you safe and warm this winter. We’ve also got some useful tips on how you can avoid frozen or burst pipes, as well as advice on how to survive a frozen pipe.
Our Checklist to Avoid Frozen or Burst Pipes
Check 1:Check your pipework, cistern and tanks in unheated areas are all well insulated.
Action: If not, insulate them with good quality, waterproof foam lagging such as our Armaflex 0 Pipe Lagging. Our pipe lagging is very easy to install, lightweight and flexible.
Check 2:Check all stops taps and valves are working correctly. Your main stop tap will usually be found at the point where the pipe work enters your premises.
Action: Once you’ve located and identified all stop taps and valves you should label them. We advise you to check them regularly to ensure they are working correctly.
Check 3:Even the best insulation won't stop pipes from freezing in a prolonged cold snap.
Action: During a really frosty spell, isolate and drain down external pipe work, outside taps and exposed plumbing.
Call in a ProfessionalIf after following this advice you’re still experiencing problems, you should contact a local plumber for expert help and advice.
You can search for an approved local plumber on the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering’s website.
What to do with Frozen PipesOk, so the worst has happened and your pipe is frozen - don't panic. Follow these steps to minimise damage and get everything back to normal as soon as possible.
Ask a NeighbourIf you've not got any water, it's worth checking with your neighbours to see if they're experiencing the same problem. There might be an incident such as a burst mains water pipe that has affected water supplies in your area.
Isolate Affected AreaDamage to pipes occurs when they become frozen, but you're only going to notice any damage when the water in the pipe thaws. So, if a pipe is frozen isolate the affected area by closing your stop tap.
Start RunningWhen your pipes begin to thaw, run your taps into sink basins and baths to drain the plumbing system. This should reduce the damage caused by water escaping from a burst pipe.
WarningDon't switch on water heating appliances, including boilers and immersion heaters, until you're sure the system has thawed out. There's a risk of a burst pipe if heat is applied suddenly. Instead reheat the building using gas, solid fuel or electric heaters that aren’t connected with the plumbing or central heating system.
Don't try to thaw pipes using a naked flame. A hairdryer can be used to direct heat onto frozen pipes, but take care, the pipe may burst as it thaws and spray water. Always thaw the pipe at the end nearest the tap first.
Resuming Normal ServiceStop running the taps and slowly open the stop tap once the plumbing has thawed and there are no leaks. Check the plumbing system for leaks once it’s under pressure. Only switch on your water heating appliance when you're satisfied all systems are thawed. If you notice a leak, isolate the affected pipe by closing the stop tap, then call a plumber. You can find an approved plumber on the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering's website.
Many thanks to Yorkshire Water for their assistance in compiling these tips.