Prevent Your Water Lateral from Freezing

cedar creek in winterHere are some general guidelines to help prevent your water lateral at home or at work from freezing (the water pipe that runs from the water main under the street to the home/business; a portion of which is owned by the property owner):

  • If you regularly use water throughout the day for showers, laundry, dishes, etc -- you’re already doing the best thing for your lateral by keeping the water flowing, which reduces the chance of your lateral freezing.
  • Prior to winter, seal basement windows and doors to prevent cold air from freezing the water pipes attached to the outside walls of your home.
  • Watch for low water pressure, as this is a warning sign of ice accumulating in the service lateral. If you notice low pressure, flush your service lateral by running cold water through one or more of your  faucets at full stream to clear out the icy water. You many need to run the water for 5-10 minutes or more. If the pressure does not return after about 30 minutes, please report your situation to us by calling 262-375-7650 during the workday or 262-375-7656 after hours. If you have signs of ice accumulating in your service lateral, please let us know even if you were able to clear it.
  • Even without signs of a frozen lateral, in unusually cold temperatures, it may be a good idea to keep the water moving by running a faucet (cold water is fine) for 5 minute spurts every 8 hours or so during times of no or low water use.
  • If you’re going to be away from home for an extended period of time and the temperature is going to be extremely cold, ask a friend or neighbor to go into your home and run cold water for 5 minutes a couple of times a day.

 Please contact our Water Utility Superintendent, Tim Martin, with any questions at 262-375-7650.