Cold weather alert! Take 6 steps to protect your pipes this weekend

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17.12.08 Cold Weather Tips Header

Is your home's plumbing ready for winter?

Temps in the teens are on the way, and whenever a deep freeze hits, our emergency line lights up with customers reporting no water at the tap. The culprit? Frozen pipes - a problem at your home that Water Department crews can't fix

Besides cutting off water, frozen pipes can burst and lead to expensive repairs. It's easy to protect your plumbing, so take action now!

Six Tips to Prevent a Cold-Weather Nightmare

Cold Tip 1 17.12.08

Let faucet run at a trickle overnight during extremely cold weather. It costs only pennies, and the moving water will help prevent the pipes from freezing.

Cold Tip 2 17.12.08

Wrap and insulate all water pipes in unheated areas, like your basement. Pay close attention to pipes near exterior walls, especially in kitchens and bathrooms. 

Cold Tip 3 17.12.08

Identify the location of the shutoff valves (see diagram) for your water supply, usually near the water meter. In emergencies, use the house-side service valve to shut off your water supply.

More tips + what to do if you suspect frozen pipes

Cold Tip 4 17.12.08

Keep water meter area above 40F. Freezing temps can break a meter, a part of the plumbing homeowners are responsible for fixing if it becomes damaged/stops working properly.

Cold Tip 5 17.12.08

Repair or replace broken exterior windows. Cover windows with plastic and caulk windows near water meters and pipes. When cold air blows on a pipe, it increases the risk of freezing.

Cold Tip 6 17.12.08

Disconnect garden hoses + shut off the outdoor water supply. Most outdoor faucets have a dedicated shutoff valve inside; use that, and leave the outside faucet open to drain the pipe.

Cold Tips Video 17.12.08

Watch: Cold weather tips video