With the Arctic freeze causing temperatures to plummet throughout much of the United States, many are looking forward to warmer temperatures. However, according to an article that appeared on WTOP, the same warm temperatures many are looking forward to could actually harm their plumbing:
As the temperatures rise, pipes frozen by the low temperatures will begin to thaw.
And while it may sound like a good thing, it could create plumbing nightmares.
“Most likely, once it warms up and the pipes thaw out, then that’s when you’ll see either a small drip,” says plumber Marc Coleman of Michael & Son Services, who adds it could be even worse.
“If that frozen section breaks loose, then you’ll see a larger drip.”
In the event that pipes begin to drip due to the warmer temperatures, homeowners should promptly replace the leaking section. This may require purchasing an entire section of pipe along with a few brass tube fittings. You may want to take a picture of these pipes and fittings to help you find the appropriate replacement parts.
When purchasing replacement valves and fittings, do not sacrifice quality in an attempt to save a few dollars. Doing so might actually end up being more expensive in the long run, as you’ll constantly need to replace the aforementioned parts. Try to purchase valves and fittings from reputable manufacturers like Gruner Brass Fittings Corp.
Once you’ve gathered all the parts and tools that you need, you need to saw off the leaking section. Then, you have to use two wrenches (one wrench to hold the pipe in place, and the other wrench to loosen the fitting) to break the connection. If this proves too difficult, try spraying a lubricant like WD-40 to loosen the pipe or fitting.
(A plumbing nightmare: As pipes thaw, leaks can cause big problems; WTOP; January 8, 2014)