Plumbers offer tips on winter-proofing your pipes - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Plumbers offer tips on winter-proofing your pipes

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(Source ABC News ) (Source ABC News )

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - The temperatures may be on their way back up this week, but the freezing temperatures this past weekend, left hundreds of residents calling their plumber.Several plumbing companies say they saw a big increase in calls from home owners about frozen or busted pipes.

The Owner of Andy's Plumbing Company Todd Devine said they're booked solid Thursday of this week. He said the biggest problem they're facing is plastic pipes freezing and busting open.

 "Since Friday we have had well over 100 since Friday, and probably 50 or 60 since Sunday", said Devine.

Frigid temperatures can do a number of things to your pipes,from freezing them, to causing a leak, or cause them to burst. Any pipe in your home can freeze whether they're metal or plastic.But is more commonly seen in PVC pipes. Either way it's time consuming and takes some investigation to figure out what's wrong.

"You more less just have to let it unthaw on its own when the temperature heats up, probably have a water meter key handy in case you do have something that breaks in your home and you can at least get the water shut off", said Devine.

If in fact the pipes are broken, it can cost big bucks to repair, reaching hundreds of dollars.

"We have had some copper lines that have run through the ceiling and everything or it insulation properly and froze and may have  split and when it thawed out water come down through the ceiling and the ceiling falls in and everything like that", said Devine.

But Devine said there are simple but important steps that can protect your pipes and help avoid having to dish out money for costly repairs.

"Try to leave the doors on the cabinets open where you can get air to them, cover meters and maybe stuff some newspaper in the meter or cover it up with a rug to keep the cold out of it. Close all your vents up around the houses, make sure all the vents are closed were you don't get any air circulating underneath the house and keep them from freezing", said Devine.

Devine said a common misconception is that cold water will make the pipes freeze faster, but he says hot water pipes will actually freeze quicker.

"The molecules in the water will change faster from being hot which is moving very fast to going a solid state which is very slow so it will  change faster. Leave a little bit of water running when its cold it wont freeze as long as its running", said Devine.

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