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Anyone ever freeze pipes in their basement not running furnace?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by KarlP, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    15,424
    Loc:
    Unity/Bangor, Maine
    When I see the temps dip below zero I tend to run my oil boiler a bit more . . . partly since the pipes run through my crawl space/basement (technically it'a s basement, but not a full basement -- I guess you could call it a a hunched over space or a short wall basement) and running the boiler will heat things up . . . of course I have also insulated the rim joists and staple plastic on the windows down there every Fall.

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  2. lansford

    lansford New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    4
    Loc:
    Northern Mn
    Been there, froze a loop of the in radiator system. Fortunately, the area that froze was PEX between the radiators. I took an electric space heater and thawed it out in about 4 hours. The cause was a small gap in the foundation where air was being sucked across the pipe. Indirectly, the cause was the wood insert because it is probably contributing to more air being pulled into the house for combustion. I wrapped the pipe with 2 layers of pipe insulation and the problem has not resurfaced and tried to plug the gap. The long term answer is going to be spray foaming the rim joist with foam when the weather gets warmer.
  3. Fsappo

    Fsappo Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2008
    Messages:
    3,868
    Loc:
    Central NY
    Yup, I've done it, and I have spent the 24 years prior to busting my own pipes in a showroom telling folks how not to bust their pipes. But I'm also the guy who after 2+ decades still managed to catch my dumpster on fire with ash that "should have been cool" Sometimes, you get waaaay to comfortable thinkin you know it all....then realize your still an idiot.
  4. par0thead151

    par0thead151 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Messages:
    491
    Loc:
    south eastern wisconsin
    those who had pipes break, how old are your homes? how many windows in the basement?
    is your home drafty?
    i have a stove rated for 1900 sq ft in my home and the house is 3100 sq ft. it heats just fine untill its 10F or colder. then the firnace will kick on when im not home.
    however i have all vents for the basement shut as i see no need to heat down there.
    it has never gotten below 52 in the basement
  5. moosetrek

    moosetrek New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Messages:
    550
    Loc:
    WY - East of Cheyenne
    1926 house, stove keeps the main floor cozy but the thermostat is righ next to it so the furnace almost never comes on. Basement stays cool, not sure prob around 50-52. The only problem I've had is that the bathroom is on the NW corner (lots of wind) above a crawl space accessed from the basement. When I redid the plumbing I ran all lines as far inside as possible, but the toilet is in the very far corner. It froze up once, so the last cold snap I was kinda worried. I crawled in there to heat-tape and insulate the pipes, unfortunately it was so cold that by the time I got back upstairs to check it, it was already frozen! Next summer maybe an insulation project for the rim joists.
  6. FireWalker

    FireWalker Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    Messages:
    380
    Loc:
    Lake George
    A subject near and dear to me.......my basement is not finished, uninsulated block walls and is unheated other than my oil boiler in the corner. I worry a little on the cold nights about freezing down there. The lowest temp I have seen down there was this winter.......36 degrees! Most all winter the temp stays around 42. I go down and check all the time. Been a cold winter! With 15 years and counting, no froze pipes yet!
  7. greythorn3

    greythorn3 Minister of Fire

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    Oct 8, 2007
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    996
    Loc:
    Alaska
    boy aint that the truth!
  8. OhioBurner©

    OhioBurner© Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Messages:
    846
    Loc:
    Central Ohio
    My pipes have froze but no bursts yet. House is around 2400 I think, half 1901 half 1990ish. Drafty, check; poorly insulated, check. basement has 2 small windows on one end and 2 small ones on other. Yes several drafts in basement needing attention. Not sure what rating the stove is, no one here seems to be able to identify it, but I think we have the sqft easily covered +25%. Furnace does not run ever if keeping both stoves going.

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