Cold temps wreaking havoc on pipes

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With the cold temperatures you can only do so much to beat the grip of a big chill.  All across Central Pennsylvania homes and businesses are dealing with bursting pipes and water damage.

Dave Haines, owner of Haines Mechanical has had a busy week. “A lot of frozen pipes!” said Haines.

One of his jobs is at the Lancaster YMCA. A small coil inside an indoor heating unit split and burst. “That split and that put some water damage into the building,” said Jeff Kenderdine, CEO of the Lancaster YMCA.

Water leaked into the building and caused damage to ceiling tiles, drywall and created a minor headache. “We have an open house on Saturday so this is a free week. We have a lot of guests coming in. It’s like at home, you don’t want a pipe to burst when you’re hosting christmas dinner,” said Kenderdine.

The colder than usual temperatures are not showing any mercy on our pipes. “It can completely flood a home, bring a ceiling down, and cause all kinds of damage,” said Haines. He says if you are worried about a pipe freezing the easiest thing to do is turn on your faucet. “Leave the water dripping, keeping the water flowing can help keep it from freezing,” said Haines.

If you think a pipe is already frozen you should contact a professional. You can also try to find the source and try to thaw it out using a hairdryer or heat gun.

Another option is insulation. “Any of your big box, Home Depot or Lowe’s sells things you can get to put on the piping. You also may want to consider put some type of heating unit in there,” said Haines.

Stats From State Farm:

With the frigid temps and the expected warm up by end of week, it will be the perfect storm for Frozen Pipe water losses across Harrisburg.

Likely, in the next few days,  these losses will continue to climb for homeowners.

On average, it costs a homeowner nearly $15,000.

Nearly 250,000 families have their homes ruined each winter.

A 1/8 inch crack in pipe can spew more than 250 gallons of water, destroying possessions, drywall and furniture.
And, both plastic and copper pipes can freeze.
But, unlike natural disasters, this disaster is preventable.
Dave Phillips
State Farm®