COMMUNITY FORUM

juliedealer

04:45AM | 10/06/04
Member Since: 03/23/04
71 lifetime posts
Bvplumbing
I just bought my home in July this year. I live in Northwest Indiana, on Lake Michigan. We can have some fairly cold winters.

It has a crawl space with vents. The crawl is about 3 1/2 feet below ground. The furnace is installed in the living area, not the crawl. I have installed r-19 between the floor joists and have insulated the duct work (a foil faced insulation designed for duct work).

The plumbing is PEX and has a Vanguard "Manabloc manifold". The piping is exposed in the crawl.

Question: Since I have insulated the heat ducts (thereby reducing a source of heat) should I be concerned about the plumbing freezing in winter?

Is PEX more, or less susceptable to freezing than copper? Is there a simple way to insulate the piping?

Julie

k2

06:40AM | 10/06/04
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
Hey there Julie, welcome back!

I have 2 areas where pipes have frozen in the past. These are wrapped with heating tape--which is on a switch. I turn it on when it's really cold (near zero or below). (I don't know about PEX....Our pipes are copper--which is pretty unforgiving in a freeze.)

But I do put faucets on a slow drip to keep water moving when it gets below zero (especially to -10 or -15 like we can get). We set the hot (as well as cold) faucets on drip. Our experience seems to back up the urban myths that 'hot freezes faster'. (I think this is due to sediment and crud that tends to line hot water pipes.)

Is your incoming water line something besides PEX? (say, copper or galvanized?) I ask because this can also freeze (at least, it has for a previous owner of our house). Hopefully someone with PEX knowledge will post--but I still think it's a good idea to set a slow drip to keep water moving through the main line.

I've also heard that the drain waste line can freeze. This hasn't happened to us, knock on wood....but it is yet another thing for us homeowners to potentially worry about!

Regards,

-k2 in CO

Moderator, Miscellaneous Forum

http://www.bobvila.com/BBS/Miscellaneous

LonnythePlumber

09:16AM | 10/06/04
Wind getting to the pipe is the worse thing. Even with your floor and duct insulation I would not think your crawl space would get below 32degrees. But I'm in Kansas and we have just a few weeks below freezing.

We plumbers are not all in agreement about which freezes faster. Generally we think that the plastic will freeze faster but not be as apt to split which requires repair.

A good pipe insulation job helps but making sure there are no cracks between your foundation and sill is more important. There is a heat tape that is much better than what we used to have. However it must be wrapped tighthly to the pipe and then insulated around it.

Opening cabinet doors and running water helps a lot. Traps can also freeze which means you can't run water to protect your water pipes. Generally the only trap you have under the house is the tub trap but there are some washing machine traps underneaty also. Traps freezing is much less common. Last time for us was twenty years ago and it still took wind getting to the pipe.

k2

12:00PM | 10/06/04
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
Hi Lonny,

VERY interesting.....about wind affecting pipes. Makes perfect sense once you think of it. But I never had "made the connection" before. (Sorry, a little plumbing pun...)

I had (erroneously) figured that "wind" meant only "wind chill" (something that humans feel but inanimate objects wouldn't). But of course, wind would extend cold weather into an area! Aha! (or, "Duh!", in my case!) :)

Lonny, have you given any thought to becoming a moderator on this forum? Just wondering. Everyone has a good time on this BBS...but us moderators have the most fun! :)

Regards,

-k2 in CO

Moderator, Miscellaneous Forum

http://www.bobvila.com/BBS/Miscellaneous

LonnythePlumber

01:47PM | 10/06/04
I like the site dedication to plumber Tom. Also when I take on legal cases I might not have time to keep up with the posts.

k2

01:55PM | 10/06/04
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
Hi Lonny,

Believe it or not, I hadn't seen the dedication...as I usually come in through the "latest 200" posts.

Now that I've seen it, I think it's great. Plumber Tom was a wonderful human being and we miss him every day.

Yes, it can be difficult to keep up with posts; sometimes I get a few days behind myself! Take care, Lonny.

Regards,

-k2 in CO

Moderator, Miscellaneous Forum

http://www.bobvila.com/BBS/Miscellaneous
Click_to_reply_button
Inspiration_banner

INSPIRATION GALLERY



Post a reply as Anonymous

Photo must be in JPG, GIF or PNG format and less than 5MB.

Reply_choose_button

captcha
type the code from the image

Anonymous

Post_new_button or Login_button
Register

A Washington State couple called on BC&J Architects to transform their 400-square-foot boathouse into a hub for family bea... Built on a rocky island in the Drina River, near the town of Bajina Basta, Serbia, this wooden house was cobbled together ... Large steel-framed windows flood the interior of this remodeled Michigan barn with daylight. The owners hired Northworks A... Edging formed with upside-down wine bottles is a refreshing change. Cleverly and artistically involving recycled materials... If you’re up for a weekend project, why not try turning an old picture frame into scaffolding for a living wall? Low-maint... Similar to the elevated utensil concept, hanging your pots and pans from a ceiling-mounted rack keeps them nearby and easy... For windows, doors, and mirrors that could use a little definition, the Naples Etched Glass Border adds a decorative flora... The thyme growing between these stepping stones adds a heady fragrance to strolls along this lush, low-maintenance garden ... Decoupage is an easy way to add any paper design to your switch plate, whether it is wallpaper, scrapbook paper, book page... Twine lanterns add pops of crafty—but sophisticated—flair to any outdoor setting. Wrap glue-soaked twine around a balloon ... When securely fastened to a tree or the ceiling of a porch, a pallet and some cushioning make the ideal place to lounge. V... Reluctant to throw away any of those unidentified keys in your junk drawer? Hang them from a few chains attached to a simp... A stripped-down model, sans screened porch, starts out at $79,000. Add the porch, a heated floor for the bath, and all the... Salvaged boards in varying widths and colors make up the dramatic accent wall in this attic space. The high-gloss white of... Need a window and a door in a tight space? A Dutch door with a window may be your answer. These useful doors are split hor...
Follow_banner_a
Newsletter_icon Google_plus Facebook Twitter Pinterest Youtube Rss_icon
 
webapp1