LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — As bitterly cold temperatures move into Mid-Michigan, one thing you don’t want to see freeze is your pipes.
It’s a common problem Lansing plumber Roger Jarvis sees every year.
“What can happen is if the pipes really freeze hard, they can actually burst, and I’ve seen where they burst in multiple locations,” said Jarvis. “Then you might have to replace all the water piping in the house.”
Jarvis said to make sure your home doesn’t have any outside drafts in places like crawl spaces or basements to avoid frozen pipes.
“Usually it’s drafts of cold air that we find when we find pipes actually frozen,” continued Jarvis. “It’s the drafts of cold air actually getting to the pipes.”
Experts with Consumers Energy say those small cracks can lead to a big increase in your energy bill.
“If you imagine a crack around your front door of your house,” said Consumers Energy spokesperson Brian Wheeler “Many of us have old homes, we can live with those sorts of things but that can be the equivalent of if you had a softball size hole in the middle of your door,”
If you’re worried about gaps, a trip to the hardware store should do the trick.
“We go around all the old windows and we put weather stripping and caulking around the outside of the windows,” said Wheeler.
Using heat tape on pipes should help too.
“You’re going to want some heat tape on your pipes, something you can wrap around pipes and actually plug in to keep them warm and keep them from freezing,” said Jarvis.
As a last resort, let your faucet drip.
“You can even release that pressure through that faucet and maybe avoid bursting some pipes if they do freeze plus the flowing water will make it harder for that water to freeze.”
If you plan on traveling this holiday weekend, experts said to use precautions.
“It’s not a bad idea to turn that water main valve off and just prevent the water source you know in case something was to freeze or power goes out,” said Jarvis.
Experts also said to make sure you’re changing your furnace filter out so it can run at full speed, and for every degree, you dial down the thermometer. Doing that can save you up to 3% on your bill.