Water Main Breaks Primer

wsscAs the region once again experiences temperatures below freezing, WSSC crews say they are ready to tackle an increase in water main breaks.

Washington Sanitary Suburban Commission (WSSC) officials are also reminding customers of a few tips that may prevent frozen or broken pipes inside the home:

–Tightly close all doors and windows.
–Seal all leaks in crawl spaces and basements.
–Ask your local hardware store about materials to insulate pipes and meters.
–Repair broken windows, doors and walls.
–Cover vents from the inside with insulation, cardboard, plastic or newspaper if they will not close.
–Maintain heat in your home.
–Open cabinet doors in kitchen and bathrooms to allow room heat to warm pipes.
–Insulate outside walls.
–Let water trickle from faucet of a vulnerable pipe.

If a pipe in your home freezes:

–Completely open the cold water faucet nearest the frozen pipe. This relieves the pressure and reduces the chance of breakage
–Use a hand-held dryer if you decide to thaw the pipe yourself.
–If you’re not certain what to do, call a registered plumber.

If a pipe inside your home breaks, call a plumber immediately. WSSC is responsible for water mains in the street and the connections to your home or business, but not the pipes on your property.

The “24/7” rapid response center handles emergency calls and quickly dispatches crews to broken or leaking water pipes that bring water to the property line. To report water or sewer emergencies, call our emergency call center at 1.800.828.6439.

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