It’s that time of year again when you need to be aware of the danger of your water pipes freezing up. If this happens then, in all likelihood, the pipe will burst. It’s because when water turns to ice, it expands, and in terms of when water freezes in pipes, this can lead to a pressure of up to 2,000 pounds per square inch being exerted on the walls of the pipe. A frozen pipe repair in London can prevent the pipe from bursting, or, fix a pipe that has already burst. All you have to do is call us here at CW Services Plumbing and Services.
Burst pipes can be expensive
The fact of the matter is that a frozen water pipe can leak as much as hundreds of gallons of water per hour. The cost in excess water alone could run into hundreds of pounds. Then, of course, there is the inconvenience, not forgetting the cost of the repair. It can amount to quite a sum.
Which pipes to be wary of
Water pipes are at their most susceptible to getting frozen when they’re located in:
- Outside locations
- Under sinks – especially if situated on the inside of an external wall
- In unheated basements or cellars
- In unheated crawl spaces
If you have a water pipe that has become frozen, but it has not yet burst or ruptured, you need to that it straight away. There are various ways of unfreezing frozen water pipes, and these depend on where they are found.
One word of warning – wherever the pipe is located – don’t use a naked flame (i.e. a blowtorch). This sort of direct, intense heat can easily damage the pipe.
With a pipe that is exposed and easily accessible there are a number of ways to can try to thaw it. Whichever way you opt for, you must apply the heating from the faucet end of the pipe towards the frozen part. This will permit any water to flow out of the tap as the thawing progresses.
Using a hairdryer
This is one of the safest options. One quick tip if this is the remedy you opt for, is that if the pipe is attached or close to a wall, place silver foil behind the pipe as this will help to radiate the heat onto the rear face of the pipe.
Using a heat lamp
Heat lamps come in the forms of infra-red lamps and incandescent lamps. As when using a hair dryer, if the pipe is adjacent to a wall, place some silver foil between the back face of the pipe and the wall.
Using a portable heater
Portable heaters can be used for unfreezing water pipes that are inside the property, under kitchen sinks and bathroom cabinets. Remembering to work from the tap end of the pipe, apply the heat to the frozen section of the pipe. This is similar in principle to using a hair drier, but the heat is a little more intense.
Using heat tape
Heat tape is a more recent invention. It is basically a tape that contains electric wires that act as heating elements. All you have to do is to wrap the tape around the frozen section of pipe; plug it into an electric socket and hey-presto.
Prevention is better than having to organise a frozen pipe repair in London
Prevention, as they say, is always better than cure. If you can stop your pipes freezing in the first place, you won’t have to organise a frozen pipe repair in London at all. There are several ways you can do this:
- Try leaving the tap dripping slightly when a freeze is forecast
- Open any under-sink or under-cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate
- Wrap insulating tape around the pipes
- Wrap the above-mentioned heating tape around the pipes and plug in when necessary
- Fit a permanent heater
If you decide to try the permanent heater route, do not use a portable heather as these shouldn’t be used unattended.
Emergency frozen pipe repair in London
If you these solutions do not work, or you don’t want to try them yourself, or your pipe has already burst, call CW Services Heating and Plumbing, and we will come to your home and carry out a frozen pipe repair in London. We operate a 27/7/365 emergency call-out service. Call us anytime on 020 7733 6812 or 07949 095 184.