Can A Dripping Faucet Really Help Prevent Frozen Water Lines?
It's stated very slowly. Just a few drops a day from my kitchen faucet. I thought it would eventually stop. It didn't. And then happened a bit more. Now it's dripping probably enough to fill a bucket with water.
Yea, I'll get to it...eventually. Or I'll call one of my friends to replace whatever is causing the drip. He knows how to diagnose and fix plumbing issues much better than I do.
But, maybe I should wait until winter is over, and just let that slow drip continue. You've probably heard that it's a good thing during the winter months, but is it true? Time to check with the experts.
I examined an article from the website How Stuff Works to find out if it's a good idea to let a faucet drip during the winter months to help prevent your pipes from freezing. My first thought is, how much higher will my water bill be and what a waste of water it is when a faucet has a steady drip happening?
Well, How Stuff Works reports that one of the most common causes of property damage is a burst pipe. I know that well from my camping experience. I make sure all water is cleared from my camper pipes and run anti-freeze throughout the lines to prevent any broken pipes.
But at home, we are constantly running water, so that's not going to work. I do empty and close off the water line that goes to the outside valve. I learned that the hard way one year when that pipe burst and water began to fill my basement.
How Stuff Works states that one dripping faucet could save you from costly repairs from frozen pipes that end up bursting. But, that dripping faucet should be as far away from the water source as possible. That way, the water flow will include the entire length of your system.
My kitchen faucet which is currently slowly dripping is the furthest from my incoming water line. Of course, there is never a guarantee that water pipes won't freeze. Even slow-moving water through your water can still freeze and cause damage.
So, while a slow drip can help prevent frozen pipes and the possible damage that can result from it, there are no guarantees that you won't experience frozen water pipes and damage just the same.
Another tip from How Stuff Works to help keep those water pipes from freezing is if you have rooms in your home where there is a faucet in a cabinet, open the cabinet doors so warm air can reach the pipes better. It's even more important if the sink is located along an exterior wall.
[via How Stuff Works]