Frozen water lines, busted pipes keep plumbers busy

Tuesday, Dixie Electric, Plumbing and Air crews responded to more than a dozen calls about frozen water lines and busted pipes. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Tuesday, Dixie Electric, Plumbing and Air crews responded to more than a dozen calls about frozen water lines and busted pipes. (Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - As frigid temperatures grip the state, plumbers have been in high demand. When we met up with Master Plumber Stan Payne, he was already hard at work.

"This is our third call of the day. We've been extremely busy," said Payne with Dixie Electric, Plumbing and Air.

Tuesday, Dixie Electric, Plumbing and Air crews responded to more than a dozen calls about frozen water lines and busted pipes.

"It has warmed up enough today the pipes are unthawing and starting to burst," said Payne.

With more freezing temps expected this week, if you find yourself with frozen pipes there are some things you can do.

"Even if it is frozen already go ahead and wrap it. You can use newspapers or old towels just anything that will help keep the wind and cool off of the pipes. If it is frozen it will keep it frozen a little longer and might keep it from breaking," said Payne.

Experts also suggest doing the following if your pipes freeze:

  • Cut-off the water supply to your home.
  • Keep the faucet open.
  • Apply heat to the section of pipe using a hair dryer or portable heater. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device.
  • If the frozen area is not accessible, you cannot thaw the pipe, or you detect a leak, call a licensed plumber.

Burst pipes can be a financial headache for homeowners. Montgomery State Farm Agent Willie Durham says insurance can relieve some of the burden.

"You're policy has language that says accident physical loss which covers a burst pipe," said Willie Durham.

While insurance typically covers things like this it's subject to your deductible which is why you need to remain aware of your policy.

"There may not be anything the insurance agent can do accept reimburse you for the loss. Have someone you can call to minimize the loss," said Durham.

Here are tips to prevent the problem of freezing pipes:

  • Leave the faucet dripping during the coldest time of the day or night.
  • Open the cabinet doors to allow the heated air from the room to reach pipes inside the cabinet.
  • Remove garden hoses attached to outdoor faucets. If the faucet is not a frost-proof type, turn off the water to the faucet inside the house and drain the exterior section of the pipe and faucet.

Copyright 2018 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.