Tualatin Valley Water Dist.
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News Release
Winter is Back ... Prepare Your Pipes Today to Prevent Damage - 12/05/18

NOTE: Photos or video content on winterizing a house and finding water shutoff valves are available by request.

Tualatin Valley Water District (TVWD) is reminding customers to be ready for prolonged freezing weather and know how to avoid the damaging effects of frozen plumbing. The District encourages customers to act now, before winter’s freezing temperatures damage plumbing.

Before freezing weather

  • Know how to turn off your water in case a pipe breaks. Common locations to find your water shutoff include:
  • In a crawl space or basement, where a water line enters the home.
  • In the garage where the waterline enters a wall or ceiling, near a water heater or laundry hookup.
  • Outside near the foundation, often protected by a concrete ring or clay pipe.
  • Disconnect and drain hoses from outside faucets.
  • Turn off and drain irrigation systems and backflow devices. Wrap backflow devices with insulating material.
  • Cover outside faucets and foundation vents with foam blocks, insulation or newspaper.
  • Insulate hot and cold pipes in unheated areas, such as the garage, crawl space or attic.

During freezing weather

  • Open cupboard doors under sinks, especially where plumbing is in exterior walls, to let interior heat warm the pipes.
  • Temporarily keep a small, steady drip of cold water at an inside faucet farthest from your water meter. This keeps water moving, making it less likely to freeze.

If your pipes freeze

  • NEVER thaw a frozen pipe with an open flame. Use hot air from a hair dryer, the exhaust from a vacuum cleaner, or a closely monitored heat lamp or electric heater.
  • If your pipes break, shut off the water at your shut-off valve. If you have trouble shutting off your water, call TVWD or your water provider to turn off water from the curb. Do not call 911.

Be Prepared for emergencies

  • Have an emergency supply of water. We recommend 14 gallons of water per person and extra for pets.
  • Have emergency supplies in place at home, work, and in your car.
  • Sign up for Flash Alerts at flashalert.net, where you can follow utilities (like TVWD), as well as fire and police services. It is a great way to get urgent alerts directly to your phone or email.
  • Follow TVWD (@TVWDNews) or your water provider on Facebook, Twitter, and Nextdoor for the latest information about your water service.

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