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DIY Plumbing Pipe Insulation for Ann Arbor Homeowners

While winter will soon be over, many homeowners in the Southeast Michigan area know all too well the frigid temperatures, and winter weather can cause a huge headache – frozen pipes. Thankfully, DIY homeowners can often avoid facing the issue of frozen pipes, sinks, or showers by taking a few preventive steps.

It’s simple, and requires just four steps!

Locate pipes that aren’t exposed. These are generally located in areas of your home such as the attic, crawl space, or garage where spaces are unheated.

Choose the insulation. There are a few options that are a favorite for those who are do-it-yourselfers, although you can find countless products designed for insulating plumbing pipes on the market. The most popular include:

  • Self-sealing foam strips are great for those with a limited budget, and simple to install.
  • Foam, rubber, or fiberglass pipe covers. These are relatively simple to install and fit over the plumbing. Check temperature ratings for the various materials available.
  • Pipe heat cables are great as a temporary or permanent solution and work even when temperatures drop well below zero. Whether your cold-water lines are made of metal or plastic, plug-in pipe heat cables provide great protection against freezing for unexposed pipes.

Note: While installation by a plumbing professional is necessary with spray foam, this is one method of insulating pipes that when correctly installed can increase the energy efficiency of your home by as much as 20%.

Inspect pipes. You can inspect your plumbing pipes for leaks or other issues yourself, or have an experienced Ann Arbor plumber perform the inspection if you are not comfortable doing it yourself. When a leak or other problem is present, insulating the pipes can prove to be a futile effort.

Schedule a time for insulation installation. If you do it yourself, you will want to leave a few hours free over the weekend to ensure you have sufficient time to complete the project. Also, be sure to read instructions on the type of insulation you intend to use, so you will have any necessary tools on hand.

For some, it is easier to let a professional handle the job of insulating plumbing pipes. Either way, frozen pipes can disrupt your life making it impossible to shower, clean, do laundry, and other daily tasks. You can protect your water line from freezing temperatures with these simple DIY steps, however, if you have questions or prefer an experienced contractor take care of pipe insulation, give the pros at Haley Mechanical a call!

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