A pipe that has busted during the cooler months is very common in areas where temperatures can drop to freezing levels. Commercial properties are especially vulnerable to these plumbing accidents when the pipes are protected. A combination of prevention and maintenance can address many of these common conditions that often lead to plumbing disasters. Here are five ways to protect your business against freezing water.
Drain pipes during holiday months
Anytime the office will be closed for a certain amount of time over the holidays, the pipes should be drained in order to prevent bursting from occurring. Remember to shut off the main valve and any taps if possible. The water should be run out of the pipes until they have been completely emptied. Making it a habit of getting the pipes drained removes the possibility of water accumulating in the pipelines.
Let faucets drip
Remember that the faucets hold water when not in use. As the water accumulates during extremely cold temperatures, the pressure can quickly build up. Making sure that all the water inside of the pipes is removed eliminates the possibility of the pressure building up in the pipes. Only a limited amount of water is needed to keep the pipes clear and prevent slow flow problems every occurring.
The pipe should be wrapped
Some older buildings may be vulnerable to drafts, which elevates risks of freezing. Exposed pipes are extremely vulnerable to cracks in being exposed to the elements. It isn’t uncommon for the pipes running along the exterior portion of the structure to be vulnerable to freezing because they aren’t usually protected. By wrapping the pipe in something like a Powerblanket, the fluids won’t be able to freeze. The insulating technology contains warming technologies that stabilize pipe temperatures during periods of inclement weather. The pipe warmers are one of the most cost-effective warming solutions available to protect the pipe from damage.
Make use of space heaters
Situating space heaters in a home near unprotected pipes keeps the pipes temperatures from changing. Space heaters can be placed near cabinetry and other areas throughout the home near the pipes to eliminate freezing. Temperatures do not have to be at high temperatures to protect the pipes. The goal is to get the space well above freezing temperatures. Cabinetry can be opened in order to permit the warm air to reach the cabinets.
Eliminate all leaks
Leaks in the home allow air to enter the structure and circulate around the pipes. As the cold air penetrates the air, the cold air is substantial enough to create freezing conditions for the pipes. Basement and attic areas in older buildings are particularly vulnerable to extreme temperatures because there may be numerous leaks. Making sure that all of the leaks in the commercial facility are properly sealed minimizes chances of freezing.
Keeping the pipes from accumulating fluids and minimizing chances of freezing are ways that a business can protect itself during freezing weather. Stabilizing the temperatures to prevent them from freezing requires insulation. Preventing pressure from building up in the pipes requires keeping pipelines as clear as possible until water is actually needed.