We're about to enter the coldest week of the winter season, with sub-zero temps and bitter-cold wind chills-- and there are few things worse than having your pipes burst or freeze!

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While it's not quite as cold as the dreaded Polar Vortex from a few years ago, the forecast for southeast Minnesota for the next week is below average, with some well-below-zero low temps along with bitter-cold wind chills too.

Is your plumbing protected? Having your pipes freeze or burst is something you DON'T want to deal with when it's 20 below zero out. State Farm Insurance says they paid over $7 million in water damage in Minnesota last year, some of that due to pipes that froze and then burst.

Pipes can freeze anywhere-- not just outside-- due to exposure from cracks or holes in siding, or because of pipes being placed in outside walls with inadequate insulation. State Farm listed some tips you can follow now to make sure YOUR plumbing doesn't freeze and burst during this latest cold snap:

  • Insulate exposed water pipes, such as those in crawl spaces, basements, or near outside walls.
  • Let the hot and cold faucets drip overnight and open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to uninsulated pipes under sinks on exterior walls.
  • Seal cracks and gaps that could bring in cold air with insulation or caulk. Check around dryer preventing, electrical wiring, doors, and windows nearest to exposed pipes.
  • Keep your thermostat set above 55ºF.

You can get more cold-weather tips to keep your plumbing safe HERE.

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