Bitter cold facing Texans – Prepare your homes now for extreme temperature drops

Published 9:58 am Thursday, February 11, 2021

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A round of severe weather, with temperatures dropping below freezing, enters much of Texas and it’s expected to extend into next week.

“Frozen pipes are an annual issues for many Texans and taking steps to protect your home when temperatures drop below the freezing mark is critical to prevent bursting and leaking pipes that can cause thousands of dollars in repairs,” says Camille Garcia, Insurance Council of Texas (ITC) Director of Communications and Public Affairs.

A prolonged cold spell can damage unprotected water lines due to water freezing and expanding in the line which causes small cracks in the pipes. Water leaks then occur when the temperature warms up and the frozen pipes thaw out.

ICT recommends taking the following steps to avoid frozen water pipes.

  • Unhook any outdoor water hoses to your faucets.
  • Wrap outdoor pipes and faucets with insulating material and secure as needed.
  • Check hardware stores for insulation products that fit over outside water faucets.
  • Open doors under your sinks to provide warm air circulation to pipes along exterior walls.
  • Circulate the water in your home by dripping at least one sink.
  • Keep the thermostat set to 55 degrees or warmer in your home.
  • If a leak is detected inside the home, shut off the water to the house immediately to prevent further damage, and contact a plumber.
  • Document any leaks and repairs and keep receipts of all expenses.

Do you know what your insurance policy covers? Texas homeowner policies provide differing levels of coverage for water damage. Call your agent today – discuss coverage, know your deductible and plan on what you can do to make sure you, your family and your property is covered.