Protecting Pipes From Freezing

Protect Your Pipes During Freezing Temperatures

When the weather is very cold outside, it is important to protect your pipes from freezing. Freezing can lead to pipes bursting or cracking.

Some pipes are more prone to freezing than others because of their location in the home:

  • Pipes located in exterior walls (usually bathrooms and kitchen sinks)
  • Any plumbing on the exterior of the home
  • Exposed pipes, especially those in unheated areas (attics, crawl spaces, garage)


  • Let the cold water drip from any faucet served by exposed pipes or those in exterior walls.  Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature day and night. 
  • Disconnect garden hoses.
  • Install a faucet insulator on outside spigots.
  • Install foam pipe insulation from your local hardware store over pipes at risk of freezing.

What Happens if My Pipes Freeze?

Once temperatures rise, frozen pipes generally thaw and water will flow again. In some cases, however, the expansion of the ice causes the pipe to crack or burst. After a freeze, it is important to inspect pipes for damage.

See also: Leaks