During winter, the plumbing in and around a house is vulnerable to freezing. This is especially true with pipes located outside the house and those in crawl spaces. Cold spells will cause the water in the pipes to freeze, and thawing these pipes to get the water flowing again can be a difficult task. So it’s essential that you take care of your water pipes during the winter season. In most cases, people let water trickle through their pipes, or wrap them up with electricity-resistant heat duct tapes. However, these measures are not very effective, and can lead to enormous waste of resources. So it’s advisable that you follow the below mentioned guidelines in order to protect your water pipes from freezing. Locate the potential areas in your house Before you start any activity, it’s essential that you identify all the potential areas in your house. That is, locate all the water pipes in your house and shortlist the ones that are located in unheated areas, such as pipes in the garage, garden, kitchen, attic and even the bathrooms. These rooms are usually not protected with indoor heaters, so the pipes in these areas can freeze easily. Insulate your pipes with strong foam pipe insulation Insulating your pipes is the first step to protect them from freezing. You can insulate your pipes with the help of a professional plumber, or you can follow a few simple steps and do it yourself. In order to insulate your pipes yourself, you need to clean them first, and then you can wrap them up in foam or other insulation tape. Install heating cables in your house Installing heating cables is another way to protect your outdoor water pipes from freezing. Heating cables can be installed next to the water pipes. In most cases, these pipes are sensitive to the weather, and respond to the climatic changes automatically. So these cables will keep the water pipes warm under severe weather changes as well. You can purchase these pipes from any leading hardware store. Use insulation boards to protect your perimeter walls To avoid freezing, you could apply insulation boards made of out of extruded polystyrene to your perimeter walls. If you are going to place the insulation board outside the perimeter walls, you will have to protect it with parge coat or any other material with similar properties. This method will help you save money on floor insulation, and protect your living and crawl spaces effectively. Turn off the water supply in your house During the winter season, it’s advisable that you keep the water supply within your house restricted. Use the water in the morning, and turn the supply off for the rest of the day, when you are at work. You only need to shut the main water valve in your house to cut out the water supply. Running water lines increase the risk of freezing, so it’s better to avoid them. Furthermore, if you are planning to go on a holiday during the winter break, it’s advisable that you shut down the water supply in your house. About the author Jessica is an expert associated with Water Works Canada, a leading plumbing and drain cleaning provider, serving GTA and Toronto since 16 years!