Possible Frozen Pipe

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On Thu, 15 Jan 2015 22:21:33 -0500, "Mayayana"

turned off and the tap open. If water pools in a low spot, totally filling a sizeable section of pipe, it can split - and it can split a second low spot a day or two later.
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| Actually, sometimes it does. I've seen pipes split with the water | turned off and the tap open. If water pools in a low spot, totally | filling a sizeable section of pipe, it can split - and it can split a | second low spot a day or two later.
It sounds like you've got some 3 Stooges pipes, turning down and then back up again in an exterior wall.
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On Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 10:54:34 PM UTC-5, Mayayana wrote:

I worked at a company that tried to save $$ by turning off the heat in the warehouse. Most of the water in the building was shut off too. Plumbers drained lines, it cost a fortune:(
Complaints were filed with the city lack of bathrooms etc.
So the heat was turned back on, to the delight of everyone who was working in freezing conditions with 75 people sharing just one toilet....
I happened to be in the warehouse when the water was turned back on. a big mess, low spots in the lines, had leaks everywhere and a major flood.
fixing the broken lines took over a week, and cost a fortune. management later admitted shutting off the heat was a major mistake
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On Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 11:14:34 PM UTC-5, bob haller wrote:

+1
I've seen similar.
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On Thu, 15 Jan 2015 22:55:58 -0500, "Mayayana"

fixing pipes, particularly if you had a good wind blowing through and had no hogs in the front. The dairy side was seldom a problem.
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On Fri, 16 Jan 2015 08:08:25 -0500, Stormin Mormon

will have any this year just because he forgot to add his foam cover. Leaving the foam off could be the final straw, but I doubt it. Just my opinion.

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bob haller wrote:

We set up a molding plant that used water in their hydraulic system. The machinery was old and water hydraulics had been more common in the early 20th century. Part of the system we installed was a cooling tower since quite a bit of heat was generated. They shut down the operation over the Christmas holidays and we told them "Do NOT shut off the circulating pumps." Of course they did. Some of the exterior plumbing split and the cooling tower was a 5 ton ice cube. They saved some electricity though.
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Thanks for all the comments. To clarify: I removed the hose from the faucet but did not shut off the water until after several days of zero weather (C hicago area). The garage wall is cinder block; the living room wall, natura lly, is drywall. In 25 years, I had no problem but always either drained th e line or put on a foam cover.
As suggested, my plan is to open the valve in the basement and listen for t he hissing of running water. If it doesn't stop I have a problem. If it doe s stop I may try heating a section of pipe in the basement with a hair drye r If the heat travels downstream it will likely indicate a leak. Supposed t o get up to 40F tomorrow.
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The question is, How much heat is the space inside the foam cover losing through the cover versus how much is it gaining from the warm pipe inside the house conducting heat to the outside to the warm the spigot and the water inside the pipe.
These covers are stiff foam for the most part, maybe 3/4" thick, with soft foam where they contact the wall, so as to fit closely over rough spots, like where there is a groove of mortar on a brick wall. They are probably fairly good insultators.
The amount of heat conducted from the inside of the house to the outside will vary based on whether the pipe is copper or iron or plastic, and is probably small per unit of time, The water will also conduct heat. However much it is, it will happen continuously, 24/7, so the heat will accumulate, except for what is lost to outside the cover.
I think a lot of people whose garden faucets freeze were close to their not freezing at all, and the foam covers can make the difference.
But it can always be colder than normal, especially for just a few days in a row, and I wouldn't suggest relying on one either.
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wrote:

So what conclusion did you reach about freeze-proof faucets? Was it only so-called, or was it really a Freeze-Proof Faucet? If so, how could it freeze and how could the water behind it freeze? Maybe I don't understand your story.

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On Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 4:04:19 AM UTC-5, micky wrote:

ommon with the garage and my living room. I turned off that supply line in the basement; now I'm afraid to turn it back on in case the pipe has burst. I can't think of any way to know if the pipe burst without turning on the water and waiting to see if it comes through the wall into the living room. Any better ideas?

Properly installed and used, they work. I've had dozens of them, no proble ms. You can screw them up several ways:
Leave a hose on so it can't drain Install it pitched down into the house instead of flat or slightly out Leave an opening around it, so wind gets to the water part Not long enough to get to where it's warm
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On Fri, 16 Jan 2015 08:05:09 -0500, Stormin Mormon

That's another thing my neighbor hasn't done, in the back.
I don't do it, but I don't *understand* it either.
If the hose is on the ground and isn't closed off by a trigger sprayer or something at the far end, and the tap is 2 feet high, won't at least the nearest 2 feet of hose drain In fact, won't must of the hose drain just by lying there?

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On Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 4:10:10 AM UTC-5, micky wrote:

The freeze and bust problems are caused when the hose has a nozzle on the end of it, which is common, and the water can't run out at all. If the end is open, the faucet is higher, then enough water will run out to clear the faucet so that it can't freeze and bust.
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With freeze proof garden hose faucet, the actual valve is several inches away from the turn handle.
With the hose on, the tube stays full of water, freezes, splits.
with the hose off, the tube drains empty. It may get cold, but the tube won't have the expanding water as it freezes.
See this reasonable article: http://www.startribune.com/local/yourvoices/243933031.html
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 10:32:45 AM UTC-5, Stormin Mormon wrote:

His point is that it's not necessarily a requirement to take the hose off. If the sillcock is a foot+ higher than the ground, there is no nozzle on the end of the hose, the water is very likely going to drain down out of the faucet anyway. I don't take my hose off, just make sure there is no nozzle.
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On 1/17/2015 5:35 AM, trader_4 wrote:

BUT I'd stop short of calling it SAFE.
Put a drinking straw in a glass of water. Suck on it to fill the straw with water. Put your tongue over the top end. Pull out the straw. What do you see happening?
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On Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 7:28:08 PM UTC-5, mike wrote:

In general, I agree. Except that many, probably most freeze proof sillcocks also have an antisiphon valve. That's like having an opening on the top of the straw. If it doesn't have that, then I agree, there is some chance that the water might not run out. I thought the same thing with those suggesting that with a regular sillcock, all you have to do is turn the water off and open the valve. Probably works most of the time, but how lucky do you feel?
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On Fri, 16 Jan 2015 05:47:45 -0800 (PST), trader_4

Agreed. Why woudl turning off the water make any difference, if there is still water in the pipe. The purpose of turning off the water is so that one can drain the pipe, so it won't freeze.
But turning off the water inside and opening the faucet outside is very often not sufficient to drain the pipe, in those cases where the pipe runs uphill before it gets to the outside faucet. In those cases the water has to be drained from the pipe by opening a bleeder valve, which one hopes is present on the inside valve, to drain the part of the pipe from the inside valve to outside valve.
It's a 3-step process in many many cases.

Exactly. If you can't see this in your own basement, you can go to home depot and look at one that is for sale.
Before they had these, I presume they used a T-connector and another full-size valve to do the draining. Not called bleeding until the valve was smaller and the flow rate was lower.
BTW, after 20 years, often using a pliers to make it tight or loosen it, I stripped the grooves on the ouside of one drain cap, but found out they sell replacements for less than $2. It's a set of 2 in the case of HDepot, to fit all brands I guess.
Called Brass/Drain Cap Replacement Part, "made" by Homewerks Worldwide and seeming sold under the part number VACCAPW2B.
It's in a box among the metal valves
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| >Why wouldn't it? Pipe is still full of water, it expands, | >it busts. Just like putting a closed bottle of water | >in a freezer. | | Agreed. Why woudl turning off the water make any difference, if there | is still water in the pipe. The purpose of turning off the water is so | that one can drain the pipe, so it won't freeze. |
You drain all of your pipes to the outside every year? I never have and I've never had a frozen/burst pipe. I shut off the inside valve, open the outside valve to make sure there's no pressure, then close the outside valve. Right now it's 5F here and a 6' length of pipe is going through an unheated area to an outside faucet. I'm not worried. It hasn't burst yet.
| But turning off the water inside and opening the faucet outside is very | often not sufficient to drain the pipe, in those cases where the pipe | runs uphill before it gets to the outside faucet.
Others have said that, but how common is it to have pipes "rollercoastering" in the average house? The OP is concerned with a water pipe running inside the garage wall. What are you suggesting? That he should rip open the length of the garage wall because it's *possible* that the plumbing was done by Rube Goldberg? It's a good point that such bad plumbing can cause problems, but it's not a likely situation. If you really think it is then there is really only one option for the OP: Rip open the entire wall now to check the pipe and add special drain valves. (Remember he's shut off the inside valve. If the pipe has burst and the temperature goes above freezing there's a good chance that not enough water will leak out to show up as a wall stain or a puddle. So the only way to rule out Rube Goldberg is to rip out the wall.)
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On Saturday, January 17, 2015 at 9:29:48 AM UTC-5, Mayayana wrote:

That's what I've done when I've had sillcocks that were not the freeze proof kind. That's why the inside shutoff valves typically have a drain cap.

It only has to happen once, how lucky do you feel? If it's a short length of pipe to a sillcock, you probably could get lucky. If it's a whole house that you're winterizing, I've seen where only trying to drain it at the lowest point resulted in some sections of pipe still having water and busting.

I think the discussion has moved way beyond the limited scenario posed by the OP. What should have been installed there would have been a freeze proof sillcock, thereby eliminating all the drama and providing water year round.

I don't see any need to rip open anything. When he turns the water back on, monitors it, if there is a problem, then he can fix it.
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