Lessons learned, pipe insulation

Well, my humor kicked back in today after that fiasco yesterday. Here's a sort of 'lesson learned' for any other home owners (or even renters who don't want to be disrupted and don't mind a small simple job).
1. Main mistake- we forgot to test the pipe heaters this winter. They had quit working due to simple age and corrosion.
2. Secondary mistake, we ignored the lack of insulation in the garage and washer room.
Our bad ;-( When it dropped to 24F, the pipe to the washing machine which runs through the garage then over the top and back down an exterior wall, split in 3 places. Copper pipe. Those of you who live 'southerly' like us, are just starting to get the below 32F temps at night for long enough to matter. Due to location, leaving a few sinks dripping, probably would not have helped this one.
Ok, the fix is easy and would have been very cheap (less than 100$ if we'd caught it before any pipes split). It's also fast to do.
Remove old insulation back far enough to check the pipe heater. Pipe heaters are long thin heavy plastic coated wires with a plug at one end and they heat up just a touch to keep a pipe above freezing. Mine actually have little thermostats in them to cut on when the ambient temp hits about 40F (adjustable). A ten foot run took 1 20ft unit as it doubles back to cover the other pipe (one hot, one cold, about 2 inches apart). The plug on mine 'lights up' when it's heating. If in doubt, these are cheap to replace at 20$ each.
If needing to replace, just remove all the old insulation back to the wall of the interior of the house, and use electrical tape to secure a new pipe heater run along the pipe. Then, wrap the whole thing with insulation. You can use precut black foam tubes to make this really fast, or you can use the wrap around insulation. The precut tubing is what we will use for the one pipe we now know should still be covered (and isnt but we now have a heater in the garage). That one pipe is visible so it will look nicer that way and provide protection if we forget to turn on the heater.
Anyways, hopefully this will help any others who didnt know about such, to avoid the mistake we just made.
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Good lessn learned, but at 24F, dripping faucets definitely would have prevented the hard freezes. In fact, that would work to much lower temps than 24. Actually, as long as there aren't drafts on the pipe anywhere, it'll work down to near zero.

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Be a good place for a run of pex, the stuff freezes pretty safely.
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"Twayne" wrote

Not so sure and thr plumber said wouldnt. It's due to the location being a good 40ft away from the nearest sink and 20ft of it exterior to the main house (and all heat) with no insulation at all in the roof over that area. It's the deadf end section of a pipe where it split, not along a run where a drip could be made.
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<<<The plug on mine 'lights up' when it's heating. If in doubt, these are cheap to replace at 20$ each.<<<
Not really. At least most don't light up "when they are heating" They simply light up if 120 VAC is at the plug. So if the thermostat or the heating element opens up, the light will stay lit. Have you ever seen the light go on and off as it cycles? ..John
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Yes. It warmed up and the light went out. The box says it's supposed to do that so I guess it's working.
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