Freezing cold weather and burst pipes goes hand in hand. One is welcome by few. The other by none at all. Thankfully, the worst one can be easily avoided.
Burst pipes are costly, destructive, and generally a right royal pain, so reducing the chance of that happening is something worth doing. Especially when it is as simple as insulating your pipes with the right type of lagging.
But you’re not a plumber. You might not have even seen pipe lagging before. Luckily, it really isn’t that complicated and the basic information, tools and equipment, needed can be readily understood.
So here are some pipe lagging tips to help you prepare for winter. Tips covering why pipe insulation/lagging is important and even how to do it yourself including what tools and equipment you will need. And it isn’t much really.
Why Pipe Lagging Is Important For Winter
Frozen pipes are one of the main reasons for pipes bursting. Particularly in the winter months when the temperatures can drop below freezing.
When water freezes inside a pipe it expands and gets bigger. This causes great stress on the pipe which then causes it to burst. When the ice thaws, the water is going to flow, and probably all over your house.
By insulating your pipes with lagging you help protect the temperature inside the pipe from the temperature outside it and stop its contents from freezing and bursting.
How To Lag Your Pipes
Getting the right lagging, and then putting it on is relatively cheap and easy. With a little knowledge of course.
You will need some essential equipment:
A tape measure
A craft/Stanley knife
Something to take notes on like a pen and paper or your mobile
Simple Steps To Pipe Lagging
To begin with you need to measure your pipes. Pay particular attention to any that may be exposed to colder temperatures like those outside or in the attic.
Measure their length and width. It is important to know the diameter of the pipes in order to get the right fit and thickness. If you’re like me you might want to take a note of that.
Make sure to turn off your heating and hot water and allow your pipes to cool.
Take your craft knife and cut lagging to size
Your lagging may, or may not, be already split down its length. If not? You’ll have to do it yourself with your craft knife. Be careful.
Pull at the split at one end and push it on to the pipe almost sliding into place. Slide along the appropriate length of pipe.
Every 30/40 centimetres you can wrap some duct tape around the lagging to help keep it in place.
Tackling a corner is about as tricky as it gets. And that’s to say not very tricky at all. Simply make a width wise cut on the lagging and it will fold around the corner.
You can add some finishes touches by putting some duct tape on a corner to keep it secure, or anywhere else for that matter.
And that’s it. Lagging finished. Time to turn the heating back on, put your feet up, and relax. (Advice thanks to Southern Water, Sussex)
For such a relatively easy job what you get back from it in return is more than worth it. You’ll have the peace of mind that no matter how cold the winter may get, or how much snow has fallen, you’ve prepared yourself well to ensure that the nice, warm, comfort zone you have right now has a better chance of staying that way.