The cold weather of Pittsburgh’s winters poses a threat to homes’ pipes. Sub-freezing temperatures can cause pipes to freeze and potentially burst. Help prevent your home’s pipes from freezing this winter with these tips.

Turn the Heat UpA copper pipe with freeze damage

Turning up the heat so that the air around your pipes doesn’t get below 32 degrees Fahrenheit will ensure they don’t freeze. Although setting the thermostat higher will cause you to use more energy, paying a little more in heating costs is better than having to call someone who provides emergency plumbing services.

Of course, turning up the heat isn’t always a viable solution. Some homes have areas where heaters don’t effectively reach, and furnaces can break down. If it’s possible to keep the air surrounding pipes warm by setting your home’s thermostat higher, though, this is the easiest way to keep pipes from freezing.

Use Space Heaters

If parts of your home have pipes and are unheated, electric space heaters can be used to keep the water in the pipes from freezing. You don’t need to keep the area 70 degrees. Anything above freezing will do.

This is often the best solution for garages and storage rooms that aren’t heated but have plumbing, such as a hot water heater, in them.

Open Cabinet Doors

To make sure your heat gets to your home’s pipes, leave cabinet doors under sinks open. This will let air immediately surrounding the pipes warm up. If you have bathrooms or laundry rooms that are particularly cold, make sure the doors to those rooms remain open as well.

Let Water Trickle

If turning up the heat and setting up space heaters won’t keep pipes warm enough, let water trickle from faucets. As long as water continues to flow through a pipe, the pipe won’t completely freeze. Some water on the edge of the pipe may freeze, but the center where water is flowing through won’t freeze — and your pipes won’t burst.

Know a 24-Hour Plumber Service to Call

Even with the best preparation, pipes occasionally freeze. Temperatures can be extremely cold, after all, and heaters occasionally malfunction in the middle of the night or while no one’s home. Therefore, it’s important to know who to call if your pipes do freeze. At Stahl Plumbing, we offer 24-hour plumbing services for emergencies like frozen and burst pipes. If you have frozen pipes this winter — call us at 412-273-1000 immediately or fill out our contact form, and we’ll come take care of the situation for you.