Cold Weather Tips

With the incoming cold front make sure your home or business is prepared. This will be the coldest air we have seen in quite some time and definitely so far this season.  We are looking at well below freezing temperatures for about four days with wind chills possible to around -20° or colder.  This can create freezing problems in buildings and homes especially if power is lost.

  1. Make sure your foundation vents and crawl spaces are closed.
  2. Make sure your water hoses are disconnected from the outside hydrants.
  3. Cover your outside hydrants. Those insulated fiberglass covers from the local hardware store work just fine. Stuff a couple of old washcloths inside them for good measure.
  4. Open your doors underneath your sinks to allow heat into the cabinets.
  5. Let some faucets drip. If you have indoor fixtures that are on an outside wall or a room that does not receive adequate heat these should be your priority. Doesn’t matter how many, but make sure at least one of them (preferably farthest from the water heater) is a hot water faucet. And don’t just let it drip, let it be almost a stream. This is especially important if your water heater is in your attic or garage. This will keep water moving through all your hot and cold plumbing.  If you have a fixture on an outside wall or a cold room both the hot and cold sides should be allowed to drip.  Don’t worry about a little higher water bill. It will be cheaper than the insurance deductible.
  6. If you have exposed pipes in your attic or garage wrap them. If they are highly exposed, you can wrap them with heat trace as well. You can get that at the local hardware store too.
  7. Know where your water meter is and know how to turn the water off! We know that we ask people not to use our equipment, but in an emergency, we understand that a customer may need to shutoff their water at the meter quickly. Knowing the location of the meter box will help both you and us if the ground is covered in snow.  Check your water meter lid and shut off lid (if applicable) and make sure they are both secure.  If these are open your water service at the meter will almost surely freeze in weather this cold.
  8. Know the contact number for your local utility in case of emergency. Our emergency number is the same as our regular number. During off hours it forwards to an on-call service which then notifies our on-call employee.  Our number is 740-985-3315   Please be patient.  We may be flooded with calls. That’s why #7 is important.
  9. This one is for safety reasons. Don’t leave a space heater somewhere unattended trying to keep pipes from freezing.