You might be planning to go out on a trip for the holidays during the winter season. Along with your family and friends to have a great time. But, suddenly you realized the damage this extremely cold weather can do to your house during the couple of weeks or couple of days you are out of your house and stumbled upon this article.
I’m glad you did because the worst damage during the winter season. To our pipes when it gets to the freezing point (let’s talk about the damage in a little while). So, to bypass this, you must exactly know at what temperature do pipes freeze in order to avoid any potential damages.
But I wish the answer for this is as simple as the question itself. Yes, that’s correct, still there is no one straightforward answer to this question even after years of experiments conducted by scientists and plumbing experts. But this does not mean staying grounded into your house during all winter is the solution.
The temperature difference between the outside Vs inside lies the key
Although the freezing point of pipes cannot be ruled out by one simple answer. It doesn’t mean that you have to live in the dark forever. When it comes to knowing at what temperature do pipes freeze. The information laid out and it’s our duty to put 2 and 2 together. Let’s look at the answer now.
We know that water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, But the problem here is that there’s a temperature difference between the outside environment and our homes, as room temperature differs most of the time. Since our pipes are mostly considered as indo-fixtures. The pipes in our houses takes time to react when it comes to changes in weather.
This makes pipes that are inside no matter whether it’s in our home, apartment or office. They will be protected to some extent during extreme weather conditions. this is true even in colder areas of our homes, such as the garage or the attic in traditional houses. And this is of course a blessing in disguise as it delays the freezing point of pipes most of the time.
So, the good news is that even though it’s 32 degrees Fahrenheit outside, you do not have to worry too much about frozen pipes that are fixed indoors. Although this is something you should be concerned about, you can relax a bit because the pipes inside your house will not react to that temperature and freeze all of a sudden without warning.
So at what temperature do pipes freeze? When it’s inside my house
If Pipes are inside, Temperature in the outside environment should drop below 20 Fahrenheit to get your pipes frozen. The bad news is that as a homeowner this is where you will definitely have to worry about having burst pipes causing serious damages to walls, floors and other furniture. And things could get even worse if the frozen pipe bursts by causing damages to your ceiling as well.
What causes pipes to burst when frozen is something you should know. What happens here is first of all the water freezes. And when water freezes it tends to expand, blocking the natural flow of water causing trouble into our daily utilization of water. This blockage might affect your kitchen, your bathroom or the toilet.
But, this is not the worst thing that can happen. If the Temperature in the outside environment continues to drop way below 20 Fahrenheit. Then, water will start to freeze faster and faster, causing the ice to expand even further. This is where your frozen pipe could burst.
Another instance where prevention is better than cure
Let’s face it, no matter at what temperature your pipes could freeze, it’s important to know how to prevent your pipes from freezing to avoid monetary loss as well as time and effort spent on plumbers. And on the other hand, fixing up a frozen pipe that’s been damaged is not going to be an easy task if you don’t have experience in fixing pipes. Therefore, preventing a pipe from being frozen is the best practice when it comes to this plumbing job.
No matter where you live, winter in most countries is going to be cruel to humans as well as pipes as they can freeze and bloat overnight. We cover ourselves for protection against extreme cold weather with clothing, the same thing goes to pipes. The only difference is we use insulation for pipes.
Insulating the pipe will act as a protective layer during the winter that will stop the pipes. From freezing, provided you finish all insulation work prior to winter. May it be foam insulation, Fiberglass or electric heating tapes. Any of those will be fine as insulation for our purpose as long as it works as a shield against the freezing temperature.
Let’s start insulating to protect our pipes from freezing
As discussed as to at what temperature do pipes freeze. We know that water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit and therefore, pipes that are installed outdoors. A much bigger chance of freezing as soon as it passes the 32 degrees Fahrenheit mark.
For this reason, it’s always better to start the insulating process from the pipes. These are outside of our house first as a rule of thumb. And then go start Insulating all the pipes inside your home afterwards. If you are really concerned about spending too much money on insulation there is one thing you can do to minimize the cost.
So, if you are really skeptical not to pay too much on insulation, you can start to wrap the pipes outside your house with newspaper or something similar. But it’s not recommended that you do this inside your house since it’s a cheap way to creep through a problematic situation that could happen outside of your house. And you don’t want to take any chances when it comes to your ceiling, bathroom or kitchen