Have Pipes Inspected Yearly to help Prevent Breaks

The winter season is coming in fast and cold which can lead to pipes breaking and blowing out due to freezing. One local plumbing and heating expert shared his expertise with NewsChannel 7 on Sunday.

Owner of Steve's Plumbing, Steve Lewallen said mobile homes, seasonal houses, homes with older plumbing, and pipe lines that are run shallowly in the ground are the most susceptible to freezing.

He recalls one cottage that was left unattended for two months. The water damage was so bad, he said, the mold on the ceiling was three to four inches thick and water was running out the patio door. The water was still running.

Lewallen advises that anyone leaving for long periods of time during freezing temperatures, even just a few days, should turn off their water.

He also recommends annual plumbing inspections, but people can also do some inspecting of their own. People should make sure pipes are well insulated and that all cold spots near plumbing are covered. Wild animals also may have tried to burrow into the siding homes and dug out insulation, which needs to be repaired. Homes with older plumbing lines should also look into updating to the kind of pipes that can better handle cold temperatures and freezes.

One common myth often use to keep pipes from freezing over is to let a small amount of water continuously drip from the faucet while away. Lewallen said it's a method that does not work very well and can unnecessarily drive up your water bill. He suggested using the methods previously noted, but adds if letting water drip is your only option, it's better than nothing.

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