Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning Blog

frozen pipes

3 Easy Ways to Protect Plumbing

We are writing this post on a sunny Friday morning in Loveland. It may be mid-January, but the weather isn’t too cold. In fact, it’s going to be a pretty warm day! Nearly 50 degrees! Not too bad, right?

Of course, currently it is only 19 degrees, which brings us to the point of this post.

Don’t get complacent.

Sure, we’ve got some warm and sunny days on the radar. But we’ve also got some cold nights and mornings ahead, as well. Just because the temperature is pleasant during the day doesn’t mean your pipes aren’t still at risk of freezing.

Keep these tips in mind to protect your plumbing in Loveland, CO, this winter.

1. Insulate Pipes and Hose Bibs

This is one of the simplest ways in which you can protect your pipes throughout the coldest time of the year. When temperatures drop, water can freeze inside pipes and outdoor hose bibs. As most of you will recall from science classes way back when—water expands when it freezes.

And that spells trouble for pipes!

If any water in your pipes freezes, and it expands enough, it can cause pipes to burst. That can lead to extensive damage, not just to your pipes but to your property at large. The last thing you want to wake up to on a winter morning is a flooded basement.

Insulating pipes with cheap, easy to install sleeves is a breeze. Covering hose bibs with insulating caps after shutting off the water to those outlets is also a great precautionary measure. A simple online order or a (safe) trip to the local hardware store can save you a major headache and expense this winter.

2. The Ol’ Trickle Trick

We know people shy away from this, and we understand why. You don’t want to waste water that you’re paying for.  You want to be environmentally-friendly. Both great arguments.

But, if you’ve had issues with freezing pipes in the past, you’ll understand that this isn’t wasting water. It’s using it for preventative purposes.

When you keep even a tiny trickle of water moving through taps, you’re helping to keep water from freezing in those pipes. Yes, you’re paying for it, but reserve the practice for very cold temps, and you can avoid an even heftier pipe repair bill.

3. Allow for Airflow

This one is maybe the easiest of all, though it may make your home a bit unkempt when in practice.

Have pipes passing under cabinetry, or behind closet doors?

Open them up.

These spaces may be uninsulated, and they may be a lot colder than your living space. Opening doors and drawers can help to facilitate airflow around these pipes.  That can go a long way toward keeping water flowing through them reliably.

Of course, even the most careful homeowners can’t avoid plumbing problems 100% of the time. That’s why you should have our number stored right in your phone. Make us your go-to plumbing service!

Schedule your plumbing services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big Enough to Serve, Small Enough to Care.


Prevent Frozen Pipes

When you think of the different problems that may develop with your plumbing system, you may think of a subpar water heating performance or a backed-up toilet. What you may not think of, at least not until it happens, is the freezing of your pipes. Unfortunately, Colorado is more than cold enough to make this a real possibility. The last thing you want after an exciting day on the slopes is to come home to your own personal skating rink.

We’ve got a few tips from our plumbers in Loveland, CO, that will help you to avoid frozen plumbing pipes in your home. Just remember that, while prevention is key, there is no way to guarantee that you’ll never run into this problem in your home. If you notice any signs at all of frozen pipes, or if you’re unsure of what you can do to prevent this issue even after reading today’s post, then let us know right away.

Maintain Airflow Around Your Pipes

If you look around your home, you are probably not going to see pipes running through your living space. If you do have pipes running along your living room ceiling, at the base of your bedroom walls, etc., well,  you may want to find a new contractor! Because so much of your plumbing system is hidden away from view, there is a very good chance that much of your piping is tucked away in unheated areas of the house.

This might mean under cabinetry, behind drawers, etc. By opening up your cabinet doors and drawers in order to let heated air from your home pass over and around those pipes, you may be able to prevent them from freezing up. It may look a bit odd to have those doors and drawers open, but it sure beats the alternative.

Insulate Your Pipes Well

There are very few plumbing services that we advise homeowners to handle on their own, but insulating your pipes is so simple that you can actually handle it yourself if you feel up to the task. Pipe insulation is very cheap, very easy to use, and can definitely prevent frozen pipes in most circumstances.

Not all of your pipes are exposed, of course, but those that are should be wrapped up in insulation. Not only can this help to prevent pipes from freezing up and bursting, but it can also help to boost efficiency as well. Wrapping hot water pipes in insulation keeps heat in the water from going to waste.

The Trickle Trick

It’s not a trick on you—it’s a trick on winter temperatures trying to devastate your plumbing system!

When you run a trickle of water through your plumbing system on those very frigid nights, you’re allowing just enough water to move through them to prevent the freezing of still water left in the pipes when they’re not in use. Don’t think of it as wasting water. Think of it as using water to prevent wasting a lot more!

Schedule your plumbing services withFort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.


Winter in this area can be truly beautiful. It Let Your Pipes Freeze can also be a whole lot of fun! Of course, coming home to a house full of frozen pipes or a flooded basement due to a burst pipe sucks the fun right out of things. Trust us on that one. That is why our plumbers in Wellington, CO want to ensure that homeowners have some tricks up their sleeves. What kinds of tricks? The kinds that will help you to limit the risk of frozen pipes this winter season!

No, you do not need to purchase expensive heating units designed to keep your pipes warm in order to keep them safe this winter. These tips are practical, effective, and, best of all, simple! If you’ve ever experienced problems with frozen pipes, then you know how much you want to avoid them. And, if you haven’t, consider yourself lucky—but don’t push that luck. Instead, keep these tips in mind and reach out with any questions that you may have.

Keep Your Cabinets and Drawers Open

Okay, this one is not going to result in a finely tuned aesthetic for your home, but do you really care that much? We’re talking about the purely functional, here, and keeping cabinet doors and drawers open is actually a very effective way to keep your pipes from freezing over. It may look strange, but the benefits outweigh any such concerns.

Basically, you’re just allowing for airflow around any pipes passing under your cabinets, behind drawers, etc. You heat your home in the winter, but keeping these doors and drawers closed can prevent that heat from warming up pipes in these areas. That missing airflow may mean the difference between water moving through your pipes or freezing up and leading to ruptures from the pressure within!

Insulate Your Pipes

Normally, we’d be telling you that adding insulation to your home is something that only trained professionals can do. And this is true, in most cases. When it comes to insulating your pipes, though, you can do the job yourself. You just need some pipe insulation tubing and something to cut it down to size .

There is no messy spray or R-value calculation to worry about here. Just buy the tubing, snip it to size, and pop it over your pipes. While you’re at it, be sure to check if your hot water line is insulated, too. If not, then you’re allowing heat to transfer through that pipe out into the air surrounding the water heater. Just an extra tip for you!

Keep the Water Trickling

You’ve probably heard this one before, but you may have written it off as a waste of water. Water is only wasted, though, when you’re really not using it. In this case, you are using the water. Just not for what you normally do.

Keep a small amount of water flowing through your pipes, and you’ll be investing in the safety of those pipes. Sure, you’re paying for water you’re just pouring down the drains—but at least there is water flowing to drain, right?

Schedule your plumbing services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.


Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning Blog