How to unfreeze frozen water pipes

Published 7:00 am Thursday, January 4, 2018

Freezing conditions in Pearl River County are expected to continue for the next few days.

And as these days of extremely cold temperatures continue, your pipes are at an increasing risk of freezing.

If you haven’t taken precautions to protect the pipes in your home, you may have woken up to lower water pressure, which is an indication that your pipes have frozen in one or more sections.

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Hopefully everyone took the weekend to wrap any exposed pipes or leave the water running inside the home to prevent the water from freezing.

The danger with water freezing inside a pipe is that water tends to expand when it turns to ice, leading to small cracks in the pipe.

Once the water melts, broken pipes will begin to leak. This is a problem on more than one level. Not only does it mean a reduction in water pressure, leaking pipes can lead to a number of other issues with your home.

If you notice a reduction in water pressure, leave the faucet on to allow the running water to melt the ice that has accumulated in the pipes, according to the American Red Cross.

While the water continues to run at a trickle, attempt to locate the frozen area of the pipe.

It will most likely be in a place where the pipe is exposed to prolonged periods of cold.

Once you feel you have located the source of the problem, use a hair dryer, heating pad or a towel soaked in hot water to thaw the frozen area.

Avoid using an open flame such as a propane torch or gas powered heater to prevent damage to the area surrounding the pipe.

Continue the process until the water flows normally.

If you’re unable to find the source of the frozen pipe, it might be time to call a licensed plumber to help.