Thawing a Frozen Pipe – When Should You Call a Plumber?

December 6th, 2013 · No Comments · by

Frozen pipePipes usually freeze over when there’s a strong cold spell or when temperatures drop suddenly.  If there’s any water in your pipes and there’s a sudden drop in temperature, the water inside the pipe will expand and exert a lot of pressure (over 2,000 pounds per square inch!). It’s a harsh reality of plumbing in Toronto. If there’s no place for the ice to expand, the pipe will burst.

A damaged pipe can lead to major water loss and potential damage to your home, not only will you spend money on the water that’s wasted, you’ll also have to replace the pipes!

Areas Prone to Having Pipes Freeze:

  • Outside your home (garden, outside walls of your home)
  • Unheated areas in your home (such as a crawlspaces, attics, basements and garages)

If you turn the water on and no water comes out or you only get a trickle of water, there’s a good chance your pipe is frozen.  If you’re lucky enough to catch a pipe that is frozen and not yet ruptured, you must thaw it out right away. DO NOT use a flame torch as this can increase the risk of a fire in your home.

Or, if you find that the frozen pipe sits behind a wall or is in a location that is hard to reach, call a plumber. We can help you thaw the ice without causing unneeded damage to your home.  There are some things you can try before calling one of our professional plumbers, but keep in mind the current state of your frozen pipe; you don’t want to wait too long so act quickly!

Tips for Thawing a Frozen Pipe:

  1. Raising the temperature in your home and waiting to see if the pipe thaws.
  2. If the pipe sits behind a wall, use an infrared lamp to heat the area in front of the wall.
  3. Cut through the wall to get to the frozen pipe and use a hair dryer or portable heater to thaw out the ice, make sure to open the faucet and work out the thaw starting from the faucet then following towards the frozen blockage.

However, when in doubt, it’s always best to call a plumber. It’s great to do things yourselves, but we also believe there is value in doing things right. To avoid unneccessary damage to your home and to ensure the pipes are thawed properly and safely, please give our team of Toronto plumbers a call. We’ll be there in a jiff to assist you.

 As the saying goes “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. So if you want more information on how to prevent your pipes from freezing read our blog post: Winter is Coming! Tips to Avoid Frozen Pipes

 

Frozen pipes? Book your Toronto plumber.

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Tags: Frozen Pipes · Home Plumbing Tips

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