Harsh winter weather could be quite a problem for pipes and water systems in general due to the high freezing risk. There are all sorts of devices and items used to prevent energy loss and pipe freezing, and heat tape is often a favorite choice of many house owners. The use of heat tape is actually labeled as one of the most efficient ways of preventing damage at the fresh water pipes; these can be wrapped in the heat tape from the installation process, or they could undergo a procedure of thermo-isolation afterwards. In either case, it is good to know that the heat tape insulated areas need to be checked from time to time to make sure that the insulating material is in good condition.
If you are the one install the heat tape, you need to stick to the instructions or directions specific for this process in order to eliminate the risk of accidents and fire setting. Little do people know that many of the home fires are caused by the improper installation of heat tape around the freshwater pipes. The tape should be used for the water pipes and the valves that shut them which are located at the exterior of the house; nevertheless, there may be interior piping systems that are exposed to freezing temperatures particularly along the walls, and heat tape can be used there too.
The most frequently asked question about pipe insulation refers to the properties of the heat tape: what size and type should it be? In order to make sure that the heat tape model you choose is the right one for your house, you need to know the diameter and the length of the pipes as such. Furthermore, correctly determining the number of valves and faucets is equally important when you want to learn how much heat tape may be necessary for the process. The usage instructions and the manufacturer's words of advice could be extremely important for the matter.
In case you already have some form of thermal insulation installed for the pipes, you should not use heat tape over it. Then, the pipes need to be checked regularly, at least once a year to make sure that there are no cracks in the heat tape installed previously. In case there are parts where you haven't made any modifications so far, avoid overlapping heat tape over itself and never use it in a bend of ninety degrees. Last but not least, before purchasing the heat tape as such, ask the manufacturer or the supplier for details concerning the type of materials on which it can be used. This is a must-deal with element since some plastic pipes don't work well in combination with heat tape for instance.