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What to do if your water line freezes

When it comes to the risk of frozen pipes in your home or business, here’s a step-by-step guide for thawing a frozen water line:

Frozen pipes in a commercial or residential property

1.      Locate the frozen pipe

First, identify the section of the pipe that’s frozen. The frozen section is usually where the pipe is exposed to cold air or runs along an exterior wall. You can also look for frost on the pipe as a sign of freezing.


2.      Turn off the water

Before attempting to thaw the pipe, turn off the water supply to that section. This minimizes the risk of flooding if the pipe bursts during the thawing process. You can find the valve on the main water line that leads to the affected area of the house.


3.      Apply heat

Use a hair dryer, heat lamp or electric heating pad to apply gentle heat to the frozen area. Start from the end of the pipe nearest the faucet and work toward the blockage. Avoid using an open flame or any heating device that can cause damage or start a fire.


4.      Use a warm towel

Wrap a warm towel around the frozen pipe or apply hot water-soaked rags to help speed up the thawing process. Don’t use boiling water, as it could damage the pipes.


Remember to be patient when thawing a frozen pipe and avoid using sharp tools or excessive force to avoid damaging the pipes. If the frozen section is extensive or you suspect a burst pipe, call a professional plumber to assess the damage and make the necessary repairs.

Tips on preventing water lines from freezing in the future

Here are some effective strategies to protect your pipes from freezing:


·       Insulate pipes in unheated areas of your home, such as basements, attics and crawl spaces.

·       Seal gaps or cracks in walls, windows and doors to prevent cold air from seeping inside.

·       Set your thermostat to at least 13 C during cold spells to ensure your pipes remain above freezing.

·       Open cabinet doors under kitchen and bathroom sinks so warm interior air reaches the pipes.

·       Allow some faucets to drip slowly to relieve pressure in the pipes and reduce the likelihood of freezing.


 The Drain Doctor™ offers preventative drain maintenance for commercial and residential customers. One of our technicians can assess your pipes and provide solutions to prevent freezing and potential damage.


Commercial plumbing services in Calgary

If you’re dealing with frozen or burst pipes, call  The Drain Doctor™ today. We offer commercial and residential plumbing services to customers in Calgary. Our fleet of vehicles is at the ready to meet all your needs. Contact us today for more information about our services or to request an estimate.


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