Frozen pipes can take some time to fix

WASHINGTON — Scores of home and business owners have been turning on their faucets only to discover they have no running water due to frozen pipes.

As blistering cold temperatures linger in the D.C. area, phone lines at plumbing companies have been ringing constantly.

“It’s all about busted pipes or frozen pipes with no water,” says Richard Nashwinter, owner of D.H. Stevens Company Plumbing and Heating.

“We’re getting 50 times more calls than we get on a normal day.”

According to the Plumbing and Mechanical Professionals of Virginia, the first thing a plumber will do is search for the location of the problem.

That initial investigation will cost $150, according to PMPV.

PMPV’s actual repair job would start at $182, although it could easily go much higher depending on the size of the pipe and how accessible it is.

“A busted pipe is easy to deal with, you go and fix it and you restore the water. With frozen pipes, it is hit or miss,” Nashwinter says.

Frozen pipes must be thawed before they can be repaired.

Sometimes a plumber can do that right away, but in other cases the best thing a customer can do is wait for it to happen, according to Nashwinter.

Opening cabinets and turning up the heat can help accelerate that process.

Nashwinter recommends leaving the faucet open so the water will start moving once it thaws.

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Nick Iannelli

Nick Iannelli can be heard covering developing and breaking news stories on WTOP.

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