Solid Science Practical Solutions


Frozen Pipes


Temperatures are predicted to stay well below freezing for the next several weeks wreaking havoc on buildings. Are you prepared to prevent and address frozen pipes before major damage occurs? Read on for help from the experts at GSE.Why are frozen pipes a problem?

When water freezes it expands. It's this unique property of water that can lead to headaches for home owners, renters and property managers.   Freezing usually occurs in pipes that run through exterior walls, particularly if there is little or no insulation. Pipes can break either at the site of the freeze or further down the line when pressure builds and ultimately leads to a break.

Whatever the origin, a break can cause water to leak into a building, causing damage to walls, ceilings, insulation, and other areas. This can result in not only building damage, but also mold and potential indoor air quality issues, particularly if the leak has gone undetected for any period of time.

Mold and Indoor Air Quality

In cases where chronic water intrusion is suspected from leaking pipes or other sources, building materials should be carefully evaluated for damage and possible mold contamination. Small areas of mold may be handled by non-professional maintenance staff, following basic precautions. However, larger areas of damage with a noticeable "musty" odor and visible or potential mold hidden behind walls or ceilings should be evaluated by a qualified Industrial Hygienist or environmental consultant with specific training and experience in microbial contamination issues. Ignoring suspected mold conditions can result in poor indoor air quality, increased potential for health risks to building occupants and expensive medical or legal claims.

If you suspect mold as a result of water intrusion call GSE at 201-652-1119 for a free and objective phone consultation. Please continue reading below for tips from the American Red Cross on preventing frozen pipes.