When people think about cold weather and Houston and Katy, Texas, they think about the hot, humid summers we typically experience. They often do not think about the possibility their sewer drain lines could freeze and break in the winter months.
Houston and Katy do have several days in the winter where temperatures dip below freezing. If your sewer lines are not properly protected, the water inside could freeze. As water freezes and turns into ice, it expands. It is this expansion that causes sewer pipes to burst and break, resulting in emergency sewer repairs. The same thing can also happen with unprotected freshwater supply plumbing lines.
So, the answer to whether your sewer lines can freeze in Houston and Katy is, yes, it is possible. Fortunately, there are several things you can do so you do not wake up to burst sewer pipes and freshwater plumbing lines.
How to Protect Your Houston Home’s Sewer Drain and Water Lines
Some of the things you can do to protect your sewer and water lines from freezing you might be able to do yourself. For more complex things, you will want to get help from our experienced plumbers to ensure your pipes are protected correctly.
1. Closed Crawl Space and Basement Vents in Winter
If you have vents on the side of your home for your crawl space or basement, make sure to close these when the weather starts turning colder. Closing the vents limits airflow and cold air from getting to your drain lines and freshwater lines.
2. Have Your Plumber Insulate Your Plumbing Lines
Insulate any exposed hot and cold freshwater lines and sewer drain lines. You want to make sure that all pipes that are exposed to cold air are insulated. If you have a well and septic system, do not forget about insulating any pipes that are above ground too.
Besides protecting your pipes from freezing, insulating has a secondary benefit: Hot water will take less time to reach your faucets and remains warmer. Your hot water heating costs will also be reduced.
3. Protect Storm Sewer Drain Lines
Storm drains can also freeze and burst. You want to make sure the storm drain lines are buried deep enough in your yard so that they are insulated from freezing temperatures. If they are not buried that deep, talk to your plumber about either adding insulation around the drain pipes or having them re-plumbed and buried deeper into the ground.
4. Run Cold Water if It Gets Really Cold
If temperatures are expected to dip down into the 20s or lower, even with insulated pipes, it is still a good idea to turn on your faucets. All you need is a small trickle of water to keep water flowing. Flowing water does not freeze as easily, so it lowers the likelihood of frozen water and sewer lines. Just remember to shut off the faucets once temperatures warm back up enough.
Contact Us for Help with Plumbing
For help protecting your freshwater and sewer drain lines from freezing, please feel free to contact MET Plumbing & Air Conditioning at 281-603-9949 today! We also offer 24-hour plumbing service and HVAC service should you have a plumbing or heating system emergency.