Plumber: Warm-up is time to watch for frozen pipe issues
Homeowners should call professional immediately if pipes break
Plumbers say now is the time to be on the lookout for frozen pipes that will start to thaw and might cause problems.
Korey Ace has been working in plumbing for about 17 years. He and other plumbing repair technicians with Sheldon Plumbing, in Verona, had a busy Wednesday.
News 3 followed along as Ace tackled a job at a condo on Madison's west side.
He said the job started off as a complaint of no hot water. The pipes in the home's utility room were cold to the touch -- something he said is a bad sign.
"This type of weather is not only hard on the plumbers but the plumbing," Ace said.
Ace said now is the time for homeowners to be on the lookout for frozen pipes.
"When things thaw out, then sooner or later that chunk of ice is going to come flying out and water is going to follow it, and that's when the flood damage occurs -- when things warm back up," Ace said.
If you have pipes on an outside wall, try to push some warm air on them, Ace said. If they are frozen, the heat could help residents avoid a break.
"If you have an opportunity to open up the service door to the area and let some heat out in there, it doesn't take very long to thaw things back out if they haven't gone to the extent of freezing so hard the pipes burst," Ace said.
If you suspect a problem, he said to call a professional right away.
He also recommends scheduling a service call during the day. To have a technician come to your house after hours, the service-call cost doubles.
"I'd say the next couple of days are going to be interesting to see just how many broken pipes are out there we're not aware of yet. But I'm not trying to be a pessimist, there may not be many at all, but nine times out of 10 there will be a few," Ace said.
He also said if you have a dripping faucet that happens to be on an outside wall, you may want to try putting a bucket under it and let it drip in there rather than down the drain. Ace said that could help prevent a buildup if there is ice in that drain.
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