There are steps you can take to protect your pipes and home during the ongoing Texas winter storm event.
FORT WORTH, Texas – Kippy Jenkins went to bed Sunday night thinking she had done anything to keep the water pipes in her 100 year old home from freezing. She kept the closet doors open, had a source of heat nearby, and even ran the taps.
Despite all of this, she had a rude awakening on Monday morning.
“No faucet works. No faucets at all,” said Jenkins, who lives south of downtown Fort Worth.
Because their power went out overnight, their heat sources failed and their pipes froze.
Michael Griffith of Pinnacle Plumbing in Fort Worth said Jenkins is not alone – nowhere near. He said he has a small company and on average they get 14 to 18 calls a day.
By noon on Monday, “we had 93 service calls,” he said.
Griffith said it might be too late now, but there are steps you can usually take to protect your pipes.
“You should open your closet doors,” Griffith explained to bring the heat to the pipes. “If you have space heaters, place them a safe distance from there and put some heat on them.”
And yes, he said to leave the taps on.
“They say you drip your faucet,” he said. “It’s often better to run it by a stream that looks like angel hair pasta.”
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If your pipes are frozen, the next risk is that the pipes will burst. Griffith explained more.
“The reason the pipes burst – right now they are freezing. That is expanding, just like an ice cube, more and more. Then they freeze and the pipe may already have burst, but it’s just frozen. And if it does warmed up Then you will see it. “
You can try to thaw frozen pipes by safely using and monitoring a space heater around the pipes. When all of your pipes are frozen, you can turn off the water in your home and open the taps. You can find more tips here.
“This morning I thought – maybe this would be shower day,” said Jenkins.
Now Jenkins is preparing for a couple of long, possibly expensive days, but is accepting everything.
“Probably a good week, I would say, before we get water.”