Approximately 250,000 homes suffer water damage due to pipes freezing and bursting every year. The total cost of the damage suffered by these households is estimated to be $500 million a year. Homeowners could alleviate much of this damage if they used the best pipes under freezing conditions. Read on to find out the most suitable cold weather pipes.
Best Cold Weather Pipes to Prevent Freezing
PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) pipes are the best under freezing temperatures. They are the least likely to freeze and burst compared to other common pipe materials like copper, PVC, and CPVC. As a result, many property managers opt for PEX for their plumbing systems.
The chemical structure of PEX gives it the flexibility needed to withstand increases in pressure and perform better during the winter. A PEX pipe can expand enough to accommodate water freezing inside it. Once thawed, PEX contracts to its original dimensions. As long as the pipe fittings are attached properly, PEX pipes can freeze and thaw without rupturing, making them ideal cold weather pipes.
Tips for Improving Your Plumbing System’s Performance in the Winter
PEX pipes are not immune to freezing and bursting. PEX pipes can burst if the frozen water exerts extreme pressure and swelling. However, the fittings or connections tend to blow off first. The fittings you use with PEX pipes should also be capable of withstanding freezing conditions.
Consider insulating your pipes, whether they’re made of PEX or a different material, especially if they’re exposed to outdoor conditions, as are the pipes in attics, basements, and near outside walls. Disconnect garden hoses from your outdoor faucets, drain them, and shut off the faucets before frigid weather sets in.
Remember that the type of pipes you use and the components of your plumbing system determine the system’s overall susceptibility to freezing. A plumber can help you choose the best plumbing materials. For more information on cold weather pipes, contact us at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. We handle the heating, cooling, and plumbing needs of homeowners in the Indianapolis area.