Recent Water Damage Posts

How Michigan Snowfall Impacts Your Home or Building.

12/8/2019 (Permalink)

Map of the State of Michigan Michigan is known for its cold and large snowfall winters.

Our winters here in Michigan often have a lot of factors that have major impacts on our roads, businesses and workplaces. They also have profound impacts on our homes, especially when the home has some issue that is occurring on a semi-regular basis. 

The issues that occur most frequently include: broken pipes, broken hoses, roof leaks, water lines breaking, and plumbing issues. All of these issues are exacerbated when in the cold weather. During the winter months, we often see the most water damage in the December and January months. 

Things you should watch for after a snowfall includes: 

  • Cracks on walls or water marking.
  • Roofs starting to crack and paint peeling.
  • Making sure that the foundation is level and no cracks are apparent.

If your home, business or organization experiences flood activity, call in your local restoration experts at SERVPRO of Fraser. We have been serving the Fraser and outlying communities since 2009. 

Why the Water Sources in Your Home Should be Monitored Constantly

12/6/2019 (Permalink)

Owner Paul Patrico monitoring a water loss. Owner, Paul Patrico, monitoring a water loss in Fraser.

As a homeowner or facility owner, you are dealing with maintaining a lot of different functions within your home on a semi-regular basis. Often, something that goes unnoticed, is the need to check for leaks within your water sources. 

Older homes, in particular, are susceptible to occasional cracks in piping or leaks in hoses causing for those leaks to happen. It should be a concern of all building owners, especially with the winters and rapid temperature variances in Michigan weather. 

Things to look for include:

  • Rips in leather hoses and tubing,
  • Securing the nozzles and areas where water can come in through.
  • Testing whether your water has any sort of discoloration as this is typically a sign of erosion within the piping.

If your home experiences any sort of flood activity this winter, call in the experts over at SERVPRO of Fraser. We have serviced homes and businesses in the Fraser area since 2009, making it ten years within the community.

How Common is Water Damage from Appliances?

5/17/2019 (Permalink)

Washing Machines can result in water damage, but usually it is due to improper use.

Household appliances can often be a contributor to a water damage situation. One of the reasons why this can happen is due to wear and tear of the appliance itself. In order to prevent this as a homeowner, you want to make sure that you check your lines in the appliance regularly to ensure that the line has not kinked itself or developed any microtears, leading to leaks. 

Another potential cause could be an overflow from the machine. Usually this would due to a user error of some sort, as these machines, especially the modernized machines, often have failsafes to prevent overflows from occurring and causing damage to your home. 

It is essential to make sure that you are using your appliances effectively and ensure that your appliances are still able to effectively do their jobs without having a potential breakdown or quality issue. In the event of a major episode, call your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331.

Storm Status: How Our Franchise Reacts to the Storm Season

5/4/2019 (Permalink)

Storm season is among us.

Last week, SERVPRO Franchises around the Southeast Michigan region went into a storm status situation. In these situations, our franchise goes to our various service areas that need damage following a major weather pattern or storm. 

Insurance agencies, at a corporate level, usually issue the start of these "storm status" events and the goal is to ensure that the damage is remediated quickly and the storm events can be rectified in a timely and professional manner. 

Depending on the volume of the storm event, sometimes it will require for our SERVPRO Large Loss Unit to be called into the area to help service the larger commercial losses as well. Through our network of 1,700 plus franchises, we can make sure that we service your home in an efficient and timely manner. 

When in a storm situation, call your claims office and make sure that they call SERVPRO of Fraser, so that we can help serve you in the best and most efficient way possible. Call us at (586) 296-3331. 

How Technology Impacts Water Damage Restoration

1/25/2019 (Permalink)

Drones are becoming increasingly common in the restoration industry.

Like everything in life, things change and processes get redeveloped to make things quicker, more efficient and with the end result in mind. This blog is going to talk about the various technologies that are used in water damage cleanup.

One such technology that is relatively new to the restoration industry is the use of drones to determine where water damage resides. Drones can find water damage in areas where it is deemed unsafe to roam into. With this access, the drone can also take pictures from angles that are not possible by a crew member and helps the insurance company to value out and determine what areas can be removed and what areas can be dried and or salvaged.

Another technological innovation within restoration is thermal imaging. This along with moisture readings can help to ensure that the structure can maintain a strong integrity after a water loss and keep the materials in line with the environmental conditions surrounding the material. 

In the event of water damage in the Fraser area, you can call your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331.

Simple tips to avoid drain blockage problems.

12/10/2018 (Permalink)

Air Movers are used to dry certain areas by the drain.

  • .Simple tips on drainage blockage prevention FAT:grease from fats and oils may be liquid on entering the drain,But it soon gets cold down there and will rapidly congeal,Become a sticky solid mass that adheres to pipe walls and attracts further waste to it.HAIR:both human and pet hair are also major clog factors the simplest way to avoid drains becoming blocked by hair build up is to install simple mesh screens over all your drains,mainly shower and bath drainsFIBROUS MATERIALS:items such as wet wipes dental floss cotton balls and feminine hygiene items should be disposed of in a bin not flushed down the toilet.They easily snag on rough parts inside drains and build up into potential blockages.Tips to remain clean drain! As well as teaching your family what is safe and what is not safe to dispose of down the drains,It's a good idea to use some simple regular cleaning procedures a handful of baking soda in the drain followed by  a kettle with hot water (not boiling) any further questions feel free to give us a call at 586-296-3331

How to Stop an Overflowing Toilet

12/4/2018 (Permalink)

Public Bathrooms like this one are prone to issues with overflowing toilets.

Stopping a overflowing toilet requires fast action and quick thinking. The first thing to do is carefully and quickly remove the lid from the toilet tank, set it aside make sure you put it somewhere secure. Next, reach inside the toilet tank and press down on the flapper valve. The flapper is the rubber piece in the bottom center of the tank. Doing this will stop the water flow and should prevent it from overflowing over the sides. Once you have the flapper valve secured, stop the tank from overfilling by lifting up on the valve that operates the tank fill valve. With the main water supply cut off, the water level in the bowl should start to drop slowly. The water levels will drop back to normal and you should be able to let go of the float and let the bowl fill. Most newer toilets prevent overflows and are designed to combat a situation like this, but it is still important to keep an eye on the water levels. 

Don’t Wait, Get to Water Damage Quickly!

11/27/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage is even something to watch for on tile flooring!

It is important to make sure that you attend to your home immediately in the event of a flood or an event involving water damage. Having a company that you can trust is essential in making sure that your home or business is not impacted and the damage mitigated. That is where we come in at SERVPRO of Fraser. We service the areas of Detroit, Port Huron, Roseville, Hamtramck, Fraser, St. Clair Shores, Clinton Township, Warren and Harrison Township. 

Mold can form within 24-48 hours of exposure to water, so it is important that you act immediately. When you call SERVPRO of Fraser, we make sure that you feel comfortable and have the ability to ask any questions necessary. We aim to work around your schedule. Whether a disaster happens at 3am or 3pm, we are available 24/7. If your home or business has been affected by a fire, water, mold or biohazard situation, call your local SERVPRO experts at 586-296-3331. We aim to make it look “Like it never even happened.”

Stop the Leak Before Repairs

5/18/2018 (Permalink)

Stop the leaks before your floor turns soaked.

Sometimes we get calls from panicked homeowners who have a flood in their home and we have to ask them if the leak or source of loss has been stopped. Majority of the time, they are still having the leaks occur, so they ask us what they should do. This blog today is about finding out who can help to stop leaks in certain areas of your home.

  • If a toilet or sink is the issue, typically your first call should be a plumber to stop the leak or troubleshoot the issue.
  • If a sprinkler system is the source of the issue, it may be in your interest to contact the sprinkler system installing company back or a handyman.
  • If it is a foundational issue that is causing the water in your home, then a foundation specialist may be the best option for you.
  • Pipe bursts inside the home, it can be stopped by shutting off your main water source, and consulting either a plumber or someone like us.

In all the above situations, typically the steps listed are needed to be done first before any action can take place from our end. We can help the cleanup after all of these situations and will gladly contribute towards the cleanup.

If you suspect your home is impacted by water damage, call your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331 or email us at

Common Areas of Water Shutoffs.

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Shutoffs such as this one, tend to be stored in the back parts of business and away from the client-facing side of buildings.

The average homeowner may know where the alarm system is, or where their fusebox is located, but do you know where your main water shutoff is? This is vitally important in the event of a flood situation because if you know where the damage occurred then you can stop the damage from impacting the rest of your home. Here are some common areas where water shutoffs are located.

Sinks/Toilets: Many homes and businesses that we enter into have shutoffs located underneath or behind the sinks and toilets. This naturally makes sense because the piping and their framework of these two areas of your home are near the source of water.

Perimeter of your home: Typically most main shutoffs are located on the street side of your home. Having a shutoff near a drain is typically common and is near the main core of the foundation of your home.

Access Panels: This is likely when a homeowner puts up drywall around the shutoff. Any contractor with a professional work style would create easy access for the shutoffs in case of emergency. It is very unwise to close off a main shutoff.

If you suspect your home is impacted by water damage, call your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331 or email us at

Water Heaters: An Unlikely Source of a Leak

1/29/2018 (Permalink)

Water Heater Leaks are typically clean water, but it can cause a major headache.

Water Heater leaks can and will occur at any point in time. They can linger on for days or weeks in an area you don’t normally walk through in your home. The cold-weather months are well known to be a busy season for water heater leaks. Making sure you monitor your water heater is very important during the winter months. The two most common reasons for water heater leaks are that:

  • Cold temperatures cause the metal parts of your water heater to expand, thus causing leaks to form.
  • Older water heaters metal become less durable and cause expansion. This can be even more severe if the water heater is located in a non-heated part of your home.

In staying warm these winter months it is critical to monitor your water heater and make sure that you are regularly inspecting and keeping notes on abnormalities with the water color and temperature in your home. By being proactive you will save your home from having potential leaks that could turn into standing water or in the worst case scenario, mold. If you suspect your home is impacted by a water heater leak, call your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331 or email us at

Tips for Property Owners/Managers with Clean Water Situations

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial buildings are susceptible to water damage, just like any home or small building.

Property Owners and Managers should be aware of what to do in an emergency situation with their property. Here are three tips that would help streamline the water damage response and provide fast action for cleanup.

  • Shutoff the water source immediately upon discovery. This helps to minimize the impact the clean water has on the structure itself. It also will cut down the costs for repair.
  • Place Aluminum foil or wood blocks under furniture legs. This prevents splitting of the wood or weakening of materials that are in the furniture.
  • Do not use a regular vacuum for the cleanup. The vacuum can experience a myriad of issues and it is important for it to be picked up with the proper equipment and dried with the appropriate protocols and standards.

If you are a property owner or manager and need a crew to call on in the event of a fire or water damaged commercial building, call SERVPRO of Fraser at (586) 296-3331.

24-Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

We can service your business or home at any time, day or night!

When dealing with water damage, it is important to make sure that you attend to your home immediately. Having a company you can trust is essential in making sure that your home or business is not impacted and that your home can return to preloss conditions. Mold can form within 24-48 hours of exposure to water, so it is important that it is acted upon immediately. When you call SERVPRO of Fraser, we make sure that you feel comfortable and have the ability to ask any questions necessary. We aim to work around your schedule. Whether a disaster happens at 3am or 3pm, we are available 24/7. We are located in the Fraser area and also service the communities of Roseville, St. Clair Shores, Clinton Township, Warren, Harrison Township. If your home or business has been affected by a fire, water, mold or biohazard situation, call your local SERVPRO of Fraser experts at 586-296-3331.

Categories of a Water Loss

11/27/2017 (Permalink)

Remediating early can save you a lot of future headaches.

Water losses are generally classified by three different categories, each classified by a degree of contamination.

Category 1 losses are from clean water sources and do not pose any risk from contact or ingestion of the water. Category 1 events include broken water lines, tub or sink overflows, rainfall and toilet overflows of clear toilet water.

Category 2 losses have minor contamination that could cause sickness, if contacted or consumed. The water would contain microorganisms or nutrients for microorganisms that harbor bacteria and other types of fungal matter. Category 2 events include washer overflows and water damage where urine is involved.

Category 3 losses are when the water is significantly contaminated and is composed of significant amounts of bacteria. Category 3 events include areas affected by sewage and feces, weather events like hurricanes and major floods, and water that contains heavy metals or chemicals.

Water losses come in many different types of varieties from the source, to the chemicals within the water, and the origin of the loss. If you have experienced a flood in your home or business and are unsure of who to call, call your local SERVPRO of Fraser at (586) 296-3331.

We Help All in Need

5/22/2017 (Permalink)

Our Owner, Paul, is working hard to ensure that the water is extracted.

It’s never easy to have to move to a new place and break away from your typical daily routine, but especially as a senior citizen. This particular senior center had a water loss that affected two floors and multiple rooms. Two main floor rooms needed to be evacuated and those residents had to be moved from their rooms for the time being in order for us to properly extract the water within their rooms. We worked well into the midnight hour to make sure that we were able to dry the rooms properly. The rooms will be finished within the week and the tenants will be able to move back into their rooms in exactly the same condition that they had before the disaster. If your business experiences any sort of pipe break or water disaster, call in your local SERVPRO experts at (586) 296-3331. We want to make the disaster look “Like it never even happened."

Flushable Wet Wipes Are Not Always Flushable

5/3/2017 (Permalink)

Sewers can wreak havoc on a home.

The wet wipes you find in the grocery store are indeed flushable, but they also can wreak havoc on your sewer system. Part of the problem with the Fraser sinkhole, is the fact that these wet wipes can wrap themselves around sewer lines and cause structural damage to those sewer lines. The concept is referred by professionals as ragging and can cause millions of dollars of damage to those sewer lines across the country. These wipes are often billed as being flushable, but the materials that make up the wet wipes aren’t easily broken down, which causes the wipe to wrap itself around a pipe. As a result, this pipe starts to have structural damage. If your sewer system is affected, it can also come in to your home as well. So, please make sure that you are throwing away wet wipes instead of flushing to combat this epidemic of ragging. If you have a sewer issue or any other water damage issue within your home, please call us at 586-296-3331 and we will make it “Like it never even happened.”

The Power of the Dehumidifier

2/14/2017 (Permalink)

This is one of our dehumidifiers that is used at our water damaged losses.

SERVPRO Franchises across the country use dehumidifiers of varying sizes to dry water losses and the structure to prevent mold growth and return your structure to its original state. These dehumidifiers aren’t like the ones that are in stores, but an industrial grade dehumidifier specific to flooding and various categories of water losses.

These are the benefits of the dehumidifiers that we use here at SERVPRO of Fraser:

  • An industrial grade dehumidifier aims to lower the air temperature of the room, so condensation can occur.
  • These dehumidifiers can also speed up the drying process because the technology of newer dehumidifiers is more efficient and lowers the cost.
  • Our dehumidifiers can be implemented into large-scale places like a gymnasium, pools and other large scale businesses and community centers.

The industrial grade dehumidifier can allow for a faster and more precise drying than simple fans or home dehumidifiers. For any questions about our equipment or any of our various services offered by our franchise, call your local Fraser experts at (586) 296-3331.

Sinkhole Effects Residents of Fraser

12/27/2016 (Permalink)

Crews working on the sink hole area in Fraser, Michigan.

SERVPRO of Fraser is monitoring the Fraser sinkhole very closely and would like to send our regards to the families and businesses affected by this tragedy. The residents and businesses of Fraser should be aware of the potential results of this sinkhole and how to prepare should they be affected by this event. Here are a list of things to be aware of: 

  • In monitoring the buildings affected, it is important to stay vigilant of rew sewage coming into your homes. Much of the sewage is being filtered into the Clinton River, but that does not mean that your home is safe from potential sewage seeping into your home or business. The first places that would be affected are the basement and other underground floors within your house or business.
  • It is also important to consider what damage the sinkhole can have on the water and gas lines near your home or business. There is potential for this sinkhole to damage the underground water lines and gas lines in the ground, causing a widespread power outage in the surrounding areas. Make sure that you have generators that can run in case of emergency to restore a source of power and energy back to your home. This is also important because by having electricity in your home, it will keep pipes from cracking due to freezing and varying temperatures.

Your families health and safety is our largest concern. If you have questions at any time, please feel free to contact SERVPRO of Fraser at (586) 296-3331 or email us at

What To Do Until Help Arrives After a Water Loss.

12/21/2016 (Permalink)

This is an example of a Category 3 Water Loss.

What you can do until help arrives after Water Damage

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

Have A Water Damage Emergency? Call (586) 296-3331

What To Do After Flooding

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do After Flooding

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

For any questions or need for water clean up call SERVPRO of Fraser 586-296-3331

The Benefits of Benefect with Water Losses

12/21/2016 (Permalink)

We use Benefect on many of our water losses here at SERVPRO of Fraser.

Benefect Botanical Disinfectant:

  • Kills Over 99.99% of Germs
  • Virucidal (HIV-1) • Bactericidal (Including MRSA)
  • Fungicidal, Tuberculocidal
  • Made From Plant Extracts
  • Pleasant Aromatherapeutic Vapors
  • No Synthetic Fragrances, Dyes or Bleach
  • No Cautions/Warnings on The Label or MSDS Sheets
  • No Rinse or Wipe Required
  • No Mixing Required

Part Of Our Botanical Cleaning & Disinfection Solution

As a contractor or homeowner you know that Benefect has been reviewed for safety, efficacy & environmental impact by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and therefore you can trust what the label says. Naturally, Benefect's botanical ingredients give it some distinct advantages.

No Rinse or Wipe Required

You can now use a product that doesn't require a rinse or wipe. This saves costly labor & time allowing you to do the job faster by saving a whole labor step & lets you move onto the next job faster. This saves you money.

It is also suitable for use around children, pets, the elderly and chemically-sensitive individuals. So you can relax about chemical contamination, overspray & evacuating building occupants.

No Warning Labels or First Aid Statements

You can now use an alternative to chlorine, ammonia & oxidizers which isn't corrosive, flammable or reactive nor does it pose a public health risk. This means you don't need any Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as: rubber gloves, boots, aprons, respirators or face shields to protect yourself from the product.

Employers are liable for the health and safety of their employees. Using Benefect ensures employers are providing their employees with the latest technology & the best choice for the job.

Would you buy 20 year old equipment? Why would you choose 20 year old disinfectant technology?

No Mixing

Ready-To-Use products dispense the correct concentration of disinfectant every time, right out of the bottle. With many concentrates, contractors need to make sure dilution rates, water hardness levels and water temperature are all correct to ensure that the disinfectant is mixed properly: too low & they may not kill effectively, too high & they may be an additional health risk. A ready-to-use formula ensures the product's proper germ killing ability on every job.

For any questions or need for water clean up call SERVPRO of Fraser 586-296-3331

The Categories of Contaminated Water

12/20/2016 (Permalink)

This picture is an example of a Category 3 loss.

In assessing the scope of a case of water damage, typically it is under one of three categories:

Category 1: “Clean Water”

Clean water situations are typically because of broken infrastructure within the structure. Examples of this include broken pipes, icemaker, or drain overflow. These situations do not contain any source of waste or contaminants within the water supply.

Category 2: “Gray Water”

Gray water situations are situations where infrastructure breaks down and the machines that use the water have contaminants. Examples of this include washing machines, leaky roofs and or dishwashers. These situations typically have some soils or contamination within the water damaged area.

Category 3: “Black Water”

Black water situations are creating when multiple sources of water cross contaminate forming a much larger water damaged area. Examples of this include raw sewage, oil spills and or flooding. These situations typically have a high degree of contamination within the area affected and often requires immediate attention.

Faster to your Water Damage Event

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Fraser provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Fraser, Warren, St. Clair Shores or Clinton Township.

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Fraser provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more.  SERVPRO of Fraser arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 586-296-3331

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

About SERVPRO of Fraser

SERVPRO of  Fraser specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.


  • ECTP - Employee Certification Training Program
  • WRT - Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • SRT - Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Technician
  • EPA Lead Safe Certified Renovator
  • IICRC Certified Firm
  • RRRP - Lead-Based Paint Activities and Renovation
  • ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician

Fraser, Roseville, St. Clair Shores, Clinton Township, Harrision Township, Warren 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

4/28/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Fraser provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration response in our service areas of Fraser, Roseville, St. Clair Shores, Warren

SERVPRO of Fraser is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 586-296-3331

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of Fraser has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Fraser

SERVPRO of Fraser specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Meet our Crew:

Frozen Pipes

1/20/2016 (Permalink)

Why Frozen Pipes Are a Problem

Water expands as it freezes. This expansion puts extreme pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes. Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor water faucets, swimming pool supply lines, water sprinkler lines, and water supply pipes in unheated interior areas like basements and crawl spaces, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets. Also, pipes that run against exterior walls that have little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.

A 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can leak up to 250 gallons of water a day, causing flooding, serious structural damage, and the immediate potential for mold.

In the U.S., frozen pipes cause significant damage every year, but they often can be prevented. Taking a few simple steps, even now, may save you the aggravation and expense.

 More from Sudbury Patch


 There are three common causes of frozen pipes:

1. Quick drops in temperature
2. Poor insulation
3. Thermostats set too low

Luckily, there are a number of preventative steps you can take to keep your pipes from freezing:

  • Check the insulation of pipes in your home’s crawl spaces and attic. Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing.
  • Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can be used to wrap pipes. Be sure to use products approved by an independent testing organization, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., and only for the use intended (exterior or interior). Closely follow all manufacturers’ installation and operation instructions.
  • Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out. With severe cold, even a tiny opening can let in enough cold air to cause a pipe to freeze.
  • Use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe just inside the house.
  • A trickle of hot and cold water might be all it takes to keep your pipes from freezing. Let warm water drip overnight, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall.
  • Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night. You might be in the habit of turning down the heat when you’re asleep, but further drops in the temperature – more common overnight – could catch you off guard and freeze your pipes.
  • Open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
  • If Your Pipes Do Freeze...

  • If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, leave the faucets turned on and call a plumber.
  • If your house or basement is flooding, turn off the water valve and immediately call 911.
  • Do not touch or use electrical appliances in areas of standing water due to electrocution concerns.
  • Never try to thaw a pipe with a torch or other open flame because it could cause a fire hazard. Every year, many building fires are caused by people trying to thaw frozen pipes. All open flames in homes present a serious fire danger, as well as a severe risk of exposure to lethal carbon monoxide.
  • You may be able to thaw a frozen pipe with the warm air from a hair dryer. Start by warming the pipe as close to the faucet as possible, working toward the coldest section of pipe.
  • Again, if your water pipes have already burst, turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house; leave the water faucets turned on and call 911. Make sure everyone in your family knows where the water shutoff valve is and how to open and close it. Likely places for the water turn-off valve include internal pipes running against exterior walls or where water service enters a home through the foundation.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat set to a temperature no lower than 55ºF.