H-CENTRAL COAST

Jan 10, 2013 9:19 PM by Cameron Polom, KSBY News

How to protect your home during the freeze

When the outside temperatures drop into the 20s, water pipes in homes are likely to freeze and burst.

It can happen in an instant, potentially costing homeowners hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs.

"We don't run into too much cold weather around here, but when we do, we definitely have problems with it," said John Cockrum of Jerry's Plumbing.

As temperatures plummet along the Central Coast this week, a lot of people are preparing for a flood of issues.

"One of the major things we want to be watching out for is exposed plumbing to the outside," said Cockrum.

He says many times, those chilly conditions can cause water in the pipes to freeze and expand, bursting from the inside.

An eighth of an inch crack can spew 250 gallons of water a day, creating quite the mess.

"We use black pipe insulation, and cover all of our exposed plumbing," said Cockrum.

He says blankets or towels will also do the trick.

Piping isn't the only concern as the temperatures drop. Most of us have already turned up the heat in our homes.

"Make sure that your furnace is properly cleaned, make sure your checking for any issues in general and the biggest is to make sure your filter is clean," said Cockrum.

He adds that a dirty furnace can lead to carbon monoxide exposure and suggests having a professional take a look at it every year before you begin to use it.

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