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Unread 01-06-2010, 08:34 PM
 
652 posts, read 834,992 times
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Default Should I let my faucets drip tonight?

This is my first winter in my house and I'm not sure about this whole faucet dripping thing. How cold does it need to be before I need to do that?

I covered my outdoor plants - anything else I need to do?
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Unread 01-06-2010, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Pflugerville
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiacook View Post
This is my first winter in my house and I'm not sure about this whole faucet dripping thing. How cold does it need to be before I need to do that?

I covered my outdoor plants - anything else I need to do?
That is a good question. I always drip my faucets if it is going to freeze because that's what my mom always did. But we lived in a mobile home and had no insulation underneath. It's a habit now. I don't know if I actually need to do it.
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Unread 01-06-2010, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Austin
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I never drip my faucets. Best thing to do is open the cabinet doors under your sinks so the heat from your house can keep the pipes warm, and you should be fine. Do you have your exterior faucets covered/wrapped?
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Unread 01-06-2010, 09:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Do you have your exterior faucets covered/wrapped?
I don't yet. The former owner left some styrofoam covers but I forgot about them - thanks for the reminder!
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Unread 01-06-2010, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
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I also just open my cabinets under the sinks before I go to bed.
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Unread 01-06-2010, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
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I you don't have covers..towels will work as well. I have 3 outside faucets and could only find 2 covers Couple of dishtowels and a rubber band fixed up that third one just fine.
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Unread 01-06-2010, 09:16 PM
 
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I went out of town over Christmas and there must have been a frost or freeze because when I got back some of my lovely plants looked "burned" - frostbite apparently! Such a drag
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Unread 01-06-2010, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
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I've found that bubblewrap and duct tape works better than the styrofoam covers for outdoor faucets (because you can fit them in such a way that there's no gaps), and that's something I always have around the house in a pinch!
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Unread 01-06-2010, 10:50 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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Yeah, those styrofoam covers sometimes are tricky to put on... especially if you want them to fit snugly. But that's what I use. I think the drip thing is probably not necessary if you have a slab foundation, but it couldn't hurt. I usually worry about pipes when the temp is less than 26 degrees for an extended period of time (more than 1 or 2 days).
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Unread 01-07-2010, 05:56 AM
 
Location: Avery Ranch
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This brings up some interesting questions for me. We don't do ANY of those things here in Minnesota unless your heat goes out and it is obviously FAR colder than it is there. In fact, the temperatures you are experiencing are warmer (by far) than we experience regularly. (Ugh!!! )

So that being said, is all that really necessary down there when it gets cold; i.e. are the homes built with less insulation or something? Is the placement of the water heaters outside?

Then again, we had a couple times where it got really cold in Phoenix, like down in the teens for the night, and we didn't do any of that there either and everything was fine (we didn't cover outdoor faucets, leave water dripping or open cabinets, etc.) and our home's hot water heater was in the garage and the homes there are definitely less insulated than they are here in Minnesota.

So, if these precautions are actually truly necessary for some reason, I guess this is good to know for when we live there, because we wouldn't do any of those things...
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