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Can My Sewer Drain Lines Freeze in Houston and Katy, Texas?

When considering Houston and Katy’s cold weather, people tend to focus on the hot and humid summers they typically experience rather than the possibility of freezing sewer drain lines in the winter months. However, these areas do have several winter days where temperatures drop below freezing, which can cause the water inside unprotected sewer lines to freeze and expand, leading to burst pipes and the need for emergency repairs.

The same can occur with unprotected freshwater plumbing lines. Despite this risk, you can take measures to prevent waking up to burst sewer and freshwater pipes.

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

When the temperature drops, it’s important to close any vents on the sides of your home that provide access to your crawl space or basement. Shutting these vents restricts airflow and prevents cold air from reaching your drain and freshwater lines, helping to protect them from freezing.

2. Have Your Plumber Insulate Your Plumbing Lines

To safeguard your pipes from freezing, insulating any exposed hot and cold freshwater lines and sewer drain lines is crucial. This means ensuring that all pipes exposed to cold air are adequately insulated, including those above ground if you have a well and septic system.

Insulating your pipes not only helps prevent freezing but also reduces hot water heating costs and allows hot water to reach your faucets more quickly and remain warmer.

3. Protect Storm Sewer Drain Lines

frozen pipes

It’s important to note that storm drains are also susceptible to freezing and bursting. To prevent this from happening, ensure that the storm drain lines are buried deep enough in your yard to be adequately insulated from freezing temperatures.

If they are not buried deep enough, consider asking your plumber to add insulation around the drain pipes or have them re-plumbed and buried deeper in the ground.

4. Run Cold Water if It Gets Really Cold

Even with insulated pipes, if temperatures are predicted to drop to 20 degrees or lower, it’s recommended that you turn on your faucets. A small trickle of water is necessary to maintain water flow, reducing the likelihood of frozen water and sewer lines.

Since flowing water doesn’t freeze as easily, this simple measure can help prevent costly pipe damage. However, be sure to turn off the faucets once temperatures rise above freezing again.

Contact Us for Help with Plumbing

If you need assistance with safeguarding your freshwater and sewer drain lines from freezing, don’t hesitate to reach out to MET Plumbing & Air Conditioning by calling 281-603-9949.

We provide 24-hour plumbing and HVAC services to assist you in the event of an emergency with your plumbing or heating system. Contact us today for prompt and reliable assistance!

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