For many homes and business, insulation can protect pipes throughout the majority of the year. But some winters have home owners wondering – is insulation enough? During Winter months is when the power of insulation is put to the test, as pipes are more at risk of freezing over in subzero temperatures. Choosing the right kind of insulation can offer some protection against freezing temperatures, but is it the most optimal choice for your building?
Is Insulation Enough for Winter Protection?
If your structure was constructed prior to 1970, there is a good chance that the insulation will need to be updated. However, there are a few more warning signs that you may be in trouble when it freezes.
- Problems with your roof or attic: During heavy snow, if you detect moisture in your attic or have water coming in through the ceiling, there is a good chance your insulation is failing. Another sign is the increased presence of animal droppings. Pests often eat away at insulation, finding a way into the warmth of your home, and leaving pipes open to the elements.
- High energy bills: High energy bills are also a sign that something is wrong with your insulation. If you notice that some of the rooms in your home or building are hot, and others are frigid, you may want to check if your pipes are exposed.
- Icicles: While icicles may look pretty adorning the outside of a building, they are often a sign that something is wrong with the insulation. Ice dams are a major sign that your building may not be ready for Winter. When your insulation is inadequate, heat will melt the snow on the top of your roof. When the moisture runs to the edges of the roof, it will freeze. The continuous buildup can create ice dams, which are a major threat to building structure integrity.
While simply replacing insulation is always an option, there are other ways that pipes can be protected from Winter freezes.
The Benefits of Heating Cable for Pipe Freeze Protection
Heating cables come in many forms, but their main purpose is to ensure that aspects of your home are safe from snow and ice during Winter.
The cables can often adjust their power output in relation to weather changes, so when temperatures drop to freezing conditions, they will automatically activate. This means you are not only relying on insulation to protect pipes, instead there is a smart system in place to keep your home or building protected from freezing.
Why You Need a Reliable System
Burst pipes are one of the worst things a building or homeowner can deal with in Winter. Not only will there be cleanup and repairs, but often an inspector will have to come to your building to see if the damage is covered by insurance.
According to a recent article, plumbers experience almost fifty times the amount of calls during Winter for burst pipes alone. The cost to repair depends on the damage, but you will at least have to pay for a professional to come assess the damage.
If you live in an area with high levels of Winter snow and ice, investing in a more energy-efficient and reliable solution should be a consideration.
If you’re ready to learn more about the wide-variety of Winter solutions offered by nVent RAYCHEM professionals, click the button below to connect with a Winter Expert.