How to Keep Pipes from Freezing

It’s been a harsh winter for many this year. In Tampa, Florida, where MaintenX is headquartered, we’ve experienced several weather fluctuations, where the temperature has dropped and risen as much as 20 degrees or more over the course of a week or two. This is not only frustrating for residents, but for commercial facility managers trying to plan and prepare for seasonal maintenance. 

One of the many maintenance dangers associated with winter is the freezing of pipes. When pipes freeze, they are at a higher risk for bursting. The water freezes and expands, putting pressure on the piping. New pipes can hold up to the stress, but older pipes will crack and be rendered useless by the morning. This can cause major issues at your facility, and may cause unexpected downtime. 

Luckily, there are several steps you can take to temper the problem of freezing pipes:

Foam insulation. Insulation is the best prevention to freezing pipes. In many northern states, pipes are installed with some layer of insulation to prevent freezing and cracking. However, if your facility piping is older it may not have enough insulation to deter the lower temperatures. Contact your MaintenX plumber to provide an inspection on your pipes during winter. 

Heat tape. Heat tape is an affordable and simple way to keep your pipes from freezing. Your MaintenX plumber can easily install this safety precaution with either a continual wattage or a self-regulating solution. Heat tape provides external warmth to keep pipes from freezing, and is much more cost effective than the at-home solution of running water through the pipes overnight. 

Seal leaks. Leaks, as well as openings where piping is exposed to the air, are the most culpable areas for pipe freezing. They are the areas that are most likely to freeze, and most likely to cause a pipe break. Be sure to check your facility regularly for leaks, and when you identify one call your MaintenX team immediately. 

MaintenX is the country’s leading provider of complete facility maintenance. We serve 13 states with emergency maintenance and preventative care services, helping them stay in tip-top shape every day. If you’re experiencing pipe problems during winter, call your MaintenX team today.

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