If you are a newcomer to Las Vegas, then freezing pipes probably fall at the bottom of your list of concerns as a homeowner. After all, Las Vegas ranks among the 10 hottest cities of the year with temperatures exceeding 100° Fahrenheit roughly 70 days each year. Even during the coldest month of the year, the high temperature is 59°, giving most people reason to focus on keeping their air conditioners in good working order.
Should you worry about freezing pipes if you live in Las Vegas?
Yes. While Las Vegas is known for its scorching summer weather, property owners should still take measures to ensure that their outside water piping is properly insulated. People situated in the higher elevations in the valley should take special precautions to prevent their pipes from freezing. This is because average low temperatures dip into the low 30s during the winter months.
What can happen if your pipes freeze?
It only takes one night of frigid temperatures to cause your pipes to freeze and burst. While uncommon during the summer months, burst pipes occur more frequently than you think – especially among uninformed residents and business owners. A burst pipe can wreak havoc on your home or business, leaving you in a wake of financial turmoil and destroyed property. Here is what can happen if your pipes freeze in Las Vegas:
- Financial Devastation: The cost of a burst pipe range from $5,000 to $70,000 and the typical insurance claim runs $15,000.
- Property Destruction: Water damage caused by a burst pipe can destroy key possessions such as flooring, drywall, furniture, and rugs.
- Health Hazards: Mold can begin to develop as quickly as 24 hours following water exposure, creating a hazardous living environment.
What are some steps you can take to prevent your pipes from freezing?
Homes that are located higher in the valley and those that are built on stilts are especially prone to freezing pipes, so make sure you take extra precautions if your home falls into one of those categories. Here are some simple measures you can take to help prevent your pipes from freezing:
1) Ensure your pipes are well insulated
“Pipe insulation can cost as little as 50 cents per linear foot at your local hardware store. So for not much more than the cost of the aspirin you’d need, you can avoid the headaches of cleanup, loss of precious keepsakes, and the cost of your insurance deductible.” – Susan Millerick, Spokesperson for Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety
One of the best preventive steps you can take as a property owner is to invest in pipes that are well insulated. The more liberally you apply insulation, the greater the degree of protection for your pipes. Make sure you pay special attention to all outside water piping, as they are more vulnerable to freezing than indoor pipes.
2) Apply heat tape to your outside water pipes
Wrapping pipes with heat tape can help slow the freezing process once it has begun. Make sure you do not skimp on the type of tape you choose. Using tape recommended by your pipe manufacturer is always advised. If you are unsure about what type of tape would work the best, an experienced full-service plumber in Las Vegas can evaluate your pipes and provide valuable guidance.
3) Keep your thermostat on when you go out of town
In an effort to reduce heating costs, many people turn off their thermostats when they go on vacation or leave for a business trip. While this strategy may help lower your energy bill for the month, it can increase the risk of your pipes freezing. If turning down your thermostat is a necessity, do your best to turn it down in gradual increments and avoid setting it below 55° when you leave.
4) Leave a tiny trickle of water running from your faucets
“Let the cold water drip from a faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe—even at a trickle—helps prevent pipes from freezing.” – Mary H.J. Farrell, Consumer Reports
This small, simple strategy is one that can have a big impact on your pipes. While you do not want to waste water, you need to make sure that the stream is small but constant. A faucet that is left barely dripping will likely not have much effect on your pipes. Finally, be sure to leave a trickle of cold and warm water running to ensure sufficient protection.
5) Make preventive pipe maintenance a priority
Adopting a proactive approach to pipe maintenance is a surefire way to prepare your pipes for the extreme change in temperatures as winter unfolds. A pipe maintenance specialist can inspect your property’s pipes and make any necessary repairs or replacements. Scheduling a maintenance visit in the fall is a good idea, as any leaks or insulation deficiencies can be addressed before the coldest weather hits.
What is the single best way to prevent your pipes from freezing in Las Vegas?
The single best way to avoid the pitfalls outlined above is to contact a licensed Nevada plumber with expertise in pipe insulation. An experienced plumber with a proven track record of success can evaluate your pipes and ensure that all outside water piping is properly insulated. This is especially important if you live in higher elevations of the valley. A dependable plumber can also provide regular maintenance on your pipes and help educate you about measures you can take at home to keep your plumbing in good working order.
Contact Village Plumbing today to ensure that your pipes are winter-ready
As the most trusted name in the Las Vegas plumbing industry, Village Plumbing, LLC has helped area residents and business owners ensure that their pipes are ready for winter. Our technicians are licensed and certified to address all of your plumbing needs, including pipe installation, replacement and maintenance. We invite you to contact us to discover why people across Las Vegas trust Village Plumbing. We look forward to meeting you!