Frozen pipe: heating tape, compressed air?

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We have a shower on a second floor with a frozen cold-water pipe. It seems to happen every time the temperature falls below 15 degrees F.

Previously I fixed this by taking the plate off around the shower control, where there's some access past the shower tile, and jamming a hair dryer or heat gun in there. But that's a hassle, and I'm worried about the heat acting on the plastic of the shower control.

Currently I'm trying a space heater in the shower with the shower door closed. (There's a nearby sink which isn't frozen, so I think the ice is limited to pipe pretty close to the shower.)

Could I shove some heating tape into the hole near the control as a solution? I wouldn't be able to ensure it was right up against the pipe, though.

I also thought of forcing room-temperature air in there. Is that a reasonably way to try to solve the problem? I don't have a vacuum with reverse, though. What kind of tool could I buy to do that...a cheap air...

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WINTERIZE A BUILDING - home - CONTENTS: How to winterize or freezeproof a building - how to set the down thermostat or turn off heat entirely. How to avoid freezing water supply pipes and drain piping, drains, traps, toilets, etc.
How to winterize pipes: frost protection for plumbing systems. Use of heat tapes, heat sources, pipe routing, to prevent freezing pipes POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs about how to protect buildings, piping, heating equipment, water softeners, wells, & foundations from freezing, ice, & frost damage REFERENCES

InspectAPedia tolerates no conflicts of interest. We have no relationship with advertisers, products, or services discussed at this website.

Building winterizing or freeze-proofing guide: this article series provides step by step details in winterizing a building or freeze protection for buildings where heat may be lowered or left turned off. Avoiding freezing pipes in buildings also means avoiding later leaks, water damage, or possibly...

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Thawing a frozen water pipe quickly is important. However, it is just as important to thaw the frozen pipe correctly. Here are seven tips to follow to help you get the water flowing and to help you avoid a burst pipe and potentially damaging flood at your property.

Tip 1: Locate the Frozen Pipe

In order to thaw a frozen pipe, you must first determine which pipe or pipes are frozen. Turn on the faucets in your property.

If no water comes out, or only a slight trickle escapes, then a pipe leading to the faucet is likely frozen. If one pipe is frozen, there is a chance others have frozen also.

If the pipes are exposed, such as pipes under sinks, in basements or along the exterior of the house, you may be able to see the frozen portion of the pipe. Frozen pipes often have frost on them or may have a slight bulge. If the blockage is located in part of the pipe that you have access to, you will have more options for easily thawing the pipe than if the...

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Wrapping exposed pipes with foam pipe insulation helps prevent freezing.

Winter has arrived, and that means bundling up to try to keep warm. You might not realize it, but the pipes on your house need protection from the cold as well if the mercury drops down into the 20s F.

Here are some tips on how to prevent your pipes from freezing and some tips on how to thaw them out safely if they do.

How to Keep Pipes from Freezing

How to Thaw Frozen Pipes

Cut-off valve on copper pipe

Water Cut-Off: Locate the water main cut-off valve, and have a water cut-off key handy before attempting to thaw out frozen pipes. Open Faucet: Open the faucet the pipe runs to before thawing a frozen pipe to allow water to flow through the pipe and relieve any built-up pressure in the pipe. Heat Frozen Pipe: Use a hair dryer, heat lamp, electric heat tape, or portable space heater to thaw frozen pipes that haven’t burst. Start from the interior faucet end of the pipe,...
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Circulating ambient water is more economical and safer then using heat tape t protect water pipes against freezing. The ReadyTemp system can be installed even by a beginner in less than an hour and a half.

Heating tape is an effective means to keep water pipes from freezing up, but heat tape consumes an immense amount of electrical energy. Typically, heat tapes consumes about 5 watts of electrical energy per foot of heat cable. Heat tape is an energy hog and also dangerous. Heat tape will short out if the pipes it is protecting develops a leak. A potential shock hazard for people unless the heat tape was connected to a GFCI protected circuit. The intermittent circulation of ambient temp water is a cost- effective way to keep pipes from freezing. A shorted out heat tape can cause structural fires, which can destroy your home. In most cases, heat tape is run in areas where there is no smoke or fire alarms installed, i.e. crawl spaces under homes and manufactured...

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As most people who experience cold winters know, frigid winter weather can cause plumbing pipes to freeze and possibly burst, causing flooding and costly water damage to your home. But what many don’t know is all of the preventative measures that need to be taken for preventing frozen pipes. Following are helpful tips to help you reduce and even eliminate the risk of frozen pipes in your home this winter.

· Keep the Heat On. If you’re leaving your house for an extended period of time, make sure that the heat is kept on. The heat doesn’t have to be kept as high as you normally would, but keeping it set above 65 degrees Fahrenheit is a good idea. This should provide enough heat to keep the pipes warm and to prevent any water inside from freezing.
· Allow Faucets to Drip Slightly. Allowing the faucets to be open will relieve pressure in the system. If a pipe freezes, it’s actually the pressure that is created between the blockage and the faucet that could cause the pipe to...

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What causes pipes to freeze? During the cold months, the water that comes into your house from outside much is colder than it was during the summer months. Pipes contract because of the cold water and this usually results in small cracks or leaks in the weakened parts of the pipes. Water in a crack will expand if it freezes, causing the pipe to burst. This could cause hundreds or thousands of dollars in damage to your home.

There are no practical methods to heat up the ground temperature surrounding your home. Moreover, you have no way of controlling the contraction caused by the cold water to your pipes and stopping the leaks when the temperature drops. The best thing you can do is to check your pipes for any leaks as soon as the temperatures change.

Prevent Frozen Pipes

To prevent your pipes from freezing and bursting, follow these tips.

Lines located near a window or an outside wall are prone to freezing. Check your basement and look for any lines near...
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Frozen water pipes are a serious risk during very cold winter weather. When water freezes in a pipe, it expands and can exert pressure at over 2,000 pounds per square inch. This pressure is enough to rupture almost any pipe filled with water, which provides no place for the ice to expand. A burst pipe can spill several hundred gallons of water per hour, and that equates to thousands of dollars of damage to your home. Pipes are most susceptible to freezing when they are located:

in an outside... wall.in a cabinet under a sink (especially near an outside wall).in an unheated crawl space or basement.

If your pipe is frozen but not yet ruptured, you must thaw it right away. There are a few thawing techniques to try, depending on where the frozen pipe is located.

Warning: Never use a blow torch or other open flame to thaw a pipe. This presents a serious fire hazard and can damage the pipe....

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[Summary]Heat Tape Add Item to To-Done List To use this feature you must be signed-in to your account, please sign in now. If you do not have an account, please create an account to participate. How & Where to add heat to protect against pipe freezing: heat t

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Heat Tape

Add Item to To-Done List

To use this feature you must be signed-in to your account, please sign in now. If you do not have an account, please create an account to participate.

How & Where to add heat to protect against pipe freezing: heat tapes, heaters, light bulbs, insulation


Where & How to Add Heat to Prevent Frozen Pipes

HEAT SOURCES to AVOID FROZEN PIPES - CONTENTS: How to Add Heat, Heat Tapes, or simply increase building warm air circulation to prevent frozen pipes. Should we add insulation in spots where water pipes are likely to freeze? - How to winterize pipes: frost protection for plumbing systems

How To...

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A frozen pipe is not an issue that can wait for warmer weather. It is important to thaw out your frozen pipes to prevent pipe bursts and potential flooding to your property immediately. However, it’s even more important that this process is done safely and correctly. Here’s how:

Determine which pipes are frozen and open their faucets

While some frozen pipes end up looking more like icicles than drainage systems in the winter, others are not so simple to locate. If your faucet won’t turn on or is only a trickle, it could mean that your pipe is frozen somewhere along the way. Exposed frozen pipes might have some frost on them, or there might be a slight bulge indicating a blockage.

Once you’ve determined which pipes are frozen, open both the hot and cold handles to relieve pressure on the system. When the pipe begins to thaw, the blockage will try to come through, and if the water is not released, you could end up causing further damage.

Options for...

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Keep your Pipes from Freezing this Winter with these Quick Tips

- December 12, 2017

It’s a common misconception that only those who live in cold climates are at risk of having their pipes freeze. The truth is that the pipes of homes in warmer climates are actually more susceptible to freezing due to the fact that they’re less likely to be properly insulated for freezing temperatures.

While frozen pipes are a problem, a burst pipe is much worse. Frozen pipes themselves are an issue because they prevent water from flowing, but a burst pipe can cause structural damage and flooding. If you’re a homeowner, business owner, or landlord that is terrified of receiving the news that your pipes have frozen or burst, follow these quick tips that will prevent just that!

Keep it Warm

If you plan on leaving your home or building for an extended period of time, be sure to leave the thermostat up and the heater on. While it may be hard to convince a tenant to...

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Pipes can freeze or even burst in times of cold weather after a period of disuse. Products to insulate pipes, such as a pipe sleeve and electrical heat tape, can be purchased and placed around pipes to prevent them from freezing. If a pipe has already frozen, wrapping it with an electric heating pad that is then warmed or towels heated with hot water can allow sufficient water to run through the pipe again. Here are steps to wrap pipes for cold weather.

Go through your house to check for leaky water pipes.

Check bathroom and kitchen cabinets, the attic, basement, crawl spaces, and garage. Look for pipes running along outside walls of your house or through your foundation as well.

Use tools or have a professional licensed plumber repair any leaking pipes or pipe joints before wrapping them. Know what type of pipe material you will be wrapping.

The pipe's material can determine what kind of insulation product you use. Check hot and cold water supply...

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Frozen Pipe and Valve.

The only thing worse than waking up on a cold winter day and not having heat in your home, is not having water because of frozen pipes. If you suspect you have frozen pipes in your home or office, make the call to Comfort Solutions Air Conditioning and Heat to thaw your frozen pipes.

Comfort Solutions Air Conditioning and Heat can thaw your frozen pipes quickly and safely with our electric pipe thawing equipment. Electric pipe thawing safely warms the frozen pipes and restores water flow in minutes. Much safer than the old method of heat guns and blow torches that have caused countless house fires. Our electric pipe thawing equipment is also much safer than running a kerosene space heater for hours in confined spaces with low ventilation. In some cases Comfort Solutions can thaw your frozen pipes in as little as 5 minutes.

Our Electric Pipe Thawing Equipment

If you have a persistent problem with frozen pipes, Comfort Solutions Air...

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Frozen water pipe: call a plumber or wait it out? I've tried all the ehow-type articles I can find online, but the spot where my pipe is frozen is not very easy to get at.

I seem to have a frozen (but thankfully not burst) hot water pipe. The ice plug is only blocking hot water to the kitchen sink and dishwasher. I've had the cabinet below the sink open for about two hours now and have been warming the (copper) pipes with a hair drier. The pipes I can access are getting nice and hot, but unfortunately there are about 30 linear feet of pipe behind drywall in the basement between the last working faucet and the non-working ones, and the frozen spot could be anywhere along there. I have the hot water supply to the house turned off at the hot water heater and the kitchen faucet hot water left open, so I don't think I'm in danger of a burst pipe. I also kicked up the thermostat a couple degrees and fully opened all the vents in the basement.

So my question is: will a...

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ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene)

What is the flame spread rating for ABS pipe?

Flame spread tests, such as the ASTM E-84 tunnel test, are designed to test the flame spread characteristics of flat surface materials, such as draperies and finish materials. Since ABS DWV piping systems are installed behind walls, under floors and above ceilings, flame spread tests are not appropriate.

What product & performance standards apply to ABS pipe and fittings?

The ASTM Standards relating to ABS for plumbing and plumbing-related applications are:

D1527 - Pipe, Schedules 40 & 80. D2235 - Solvent Cement. D2321 - Underground Installation Procedures. D2468 - Fittings, Schedule 40, Socket Type. D2661 - Schedule 40 DWV Pipe & Fittings. D2751 - Sewer Pipe & Fittings. D3212 - Elastomeric Joints for Drain and Sewer Pipes. D3965 - Rigid ABS Compounds for Pipe/Fittings. F402 - Safe...
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