The weather outside is frightful.
In fact, the Chicago area recorded wind chill temperatures as low as 13 below zero today.
It’s time to protect your pipes.
I know all too well from experience that winter temperatures can cause the pipes in your Chicago home to freeze and burst, which can destroy floors, furniture, appliances and momentos that can never be replaced.
“A small crack in a pipe can leak water at a volume of 14 gallons a minute,” said Jamie France of State Farm Insurance. “In most cases, water losses can be avoided by taking a few simple precautions. Spending a few minutes to protect your pipes could save you time and expense down the road.”
Here are some simple steps to take:
*Open cabinet doors so heat will hit the pipes under sinks and vanities near exterior walls.
*Run a small trickle of water from hot and cold faucets during extreme cold times.
*Keep exterior doors to any unheated spaces closed as much as possible during the winter.
Some bigger steps you can take:
*Insulate pipes that are in unheated areas or that run along outside walls, floors and ceilings.
*Seal foundation cracks, especially near crawl spaces.
*Install a whole house water leak detection system. State Farm has a list of manufacturers.
If you are going to be away from your home for more than 24 hours, have someone check your house during severe cold spells. Discovering a burst pipe early can prevent excessive damage.
Keep your home’s pipes warm and enjoy Chicago’s winter, which can be brutal but also beautiful.