Main (Home Page) News

Posted on: January 4, 2018

Ways to avoid frozen water pipes within your homes

Due to the extreme cold we’re experiencing, the Department of Public Works would like to remind our water customers of ways to avoid frozen water pipes within your homes.  Property owners are responsible for protecting their water pipes and water meter (interior or exterior) from cold air and wind.

Follow these tips to keep the water safely flowing to your taps all winter long. 

  • Check water pipes near uninsulated or drafty walls, doors, floors and windows, including in your basement, garage or attic. Add insulation wherever you can. Insulating or wrapping pipes can also help. 
  • Keep all doors and windows tightly closed. Fill cracks in walls and around doors and windows. - Locate the main shut-off valve to your home. Show all household members how to turn it off if a pipe bursts in your home. - Open cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate around pipes along outside walls. In extreme cold like we’re currently experiencing, let faucets drip. - If your water meter is in an outdoor pit, check to see that the pit cover fits properly and has no cracks through which cold air can flow. 
  • Never use a torch or open flame to thaw a pipe. 
  • If you see or suspect damage to your water pipes, call a licensed plumber for assistance. If you see or suspect a frozen or damaged water meter, please call the Department of Public Works Water Department at (518) 439-4955.

And a reminder to keep fire hydrants clear of snow.  The Town of Bethlehem has over 1600 fire hydrants spread out over many miles of the water distribution system. If you have a fire hydrant in front of or close to your property, please help to ensure the visibility and accessibility of the fire hydrant. Snow, weeds, shrubs, trees, flowerbeds, etc. can all hinder the use of a fire hydrant, so keeping them clear at all times is imperative. Please help to keep the fire hydrants clear and your neighborhood safe.

DPW Water Division
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