City of Cleveland Winter Weather Public Utilities Update – January 28, 2014 at 5 PM

Bitterly cold temperatures can lead to frozen pipes in the home and when temperatures rise, an increase in water main breaks. Cleveland’s Department of Public Utilities is continuing to monitor its systems and infrastructure and dispatch crews as necessary.

As always with the cold weather, water pipes are susceptible to freezing. Here are some tips to prevent frozen plumbing:

  1. Run a small stream of water through your pipes; a pencil-thin stream through a sink faucet should be enough.
  2. If you have the means to, provide some heat to the susceptible plumbing and/or insulate your water pipes.

Use these tips until temperatures are above 20⁰F for an extended period of time.

If your plumbing does freeze or burst, and it does not involve a burst water meter, you must hire your own certified plumber to make repairs. Unfortunately, Cleveland Water is not able to assist with such repairs in your home.

If freezing temperatures do cause a frozen water line on your property, take these two essential steps:

  • Find the master shut-off valve. Most likely it’s where the water line comes into the basement or crawl space from the street. If a pipe bursts anywhere in the house, this valve can turn off the water.
  • Contact a plumber or a private contractor to thaw your lines.

If you choose to thaw them yourself, here are some tips to help:

  • Apply heat in the general area by increasing the room temperature where the pipes are exposed (basement, crawlspace, recreation room).
  • Place a portable heater in the room(s).
  • Use a heating blanket/pad – available at most hardware or plumbing stores.

Do not stand in water while using electric appliances.

Stay safe and warm, and remember you can find these tips and more at www.clevelandwater.com.

About Daniel Williams

City of Cleveland, Ohio, Director of Media Relations

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