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Posted by Eric Smith's 411 ON FROZEN PIPES on Thu Jan 18th, 2018 at 4:13 pm

Frozen pipes in Wisconsin happen! No water at the second floor shower? Bathroom over the garage and you forgot to close the garage door? Sink on the outside wall with no hot water?

Before I go into the most important thing I can say about frozen pipes...If you think you have a frozen pipe in your home, turn off the main water supply anytime you're not home and when you are sleeping!


What causes it: We see many more clients calling with frozen pipes when it's cold and windy verses just cold. This is because when its windy, mother nature drives the cold in all the cracks and crevasses of your home's exterior, virtually encasing exposed water piping in an ice box. Cold and wind plus a pipe that's too close to an outside wall, or the frigid attic air, is all that's required for a frozen pipe disaster.


What happens: When water freezes it expands and pushes outward on the pipe wall, and in some cases, it causes the pipe to crack and split. I say in "some cases" because it's not guaranteed that a frozen line will burst or leak when it thaws. However, it's also far from guaranteed that a line that has frozen in the past wont burst this time! As long as the pipe remains frozen there is no leaking because the same ice that caused the pipe to break is acting as a plug, keeping the pipe from leaking until the dreaded thaw...


The Risk: A bad freeze and split pipe can spray hundreds of gallons of water per hour at 60 pounds of pressure into your home when thawed. This is enough water that can cause tens of thousands of dollars of damage in a few short minutes, and be completely devastating to a home if it goes on undetected longer.


What Can Be Done: In some circumstances we can thaw frozen pipes in Waukesha County at the hands of a Smell Good Plumber using special technology. Another popular option is to have one of our Smell Good Plumbers install isolation valves, so only the problematic area of the home can be shut off. Unfortunately, there are some instances that the only thing that can be done is to wait it out.


The thaw: It doesn't take much of a warm up after a windy subzero week in Wisconsin and The Smell Good Plumbers at Austin Plumbing Company are bombarded by the frantic calls for help when that ice plug melts. Remember, a split waterline can easily leak hundreds of gallons of water per hour which is why its critical you shut the water off while your not home or sleeping if you suspect a frozen water line.


In Summary:

1) If you have a frozen water pipe or suspect that you do, locate your main shut off valve. If you don't know where your main shut off Austin Plumbing at 262-367-3808!

2) Shut the water off anytime you are away from the home or sleeping to prevent major damage

3) Call Austin Plumbing Company to schedule a Smell Good Plumber in-home service visit to discuss pipe unthawing and all of your prevention options at 262-367-3808!


Austin Plumbing Company - award winning provider of residential plumbing, heating, and air conditioning service and replacement. Our number one priority is providing the highest level of service! Austin Plumbing Company 262-367-3808 or

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