Frigid temperatures can be costly - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Frigid temperatures can be costly

Garage ceiling caves in after pipes freeze, crack, then flood Garage ceiling caves in after pipes freeze, crack, then flood
MARIETTA, GA (CBS46) -

The frigid blast across the Atlanta area this week means we all have to protect our homes and pets again. Some  learned that the hard, and costly, way after temperatures plunged below freezing two weeks ago.

It froze and cracked pipes in homes, causing water to flood first floors, or in some cases, cave in a home's second floor.

The pipes froze in at least nine out of the 64 homes in one neighborhood off of Wickingham Drive in Marietta.

Plumbers say one of the biggest problems is that builders lay pipes outside a home's insulation, instead of tucking it warmly between the structure and the insulation.

Other huge issues, the plumbers said, include homeowners not knowing where to turn off the valves, not draining and covering outside spigots and not leaving faucets running.

Kimberly Heinrich lives in a two-story home off of Wickingham Court. She learned just how problematic those factors are in below-freezing temperatures. Heinrich says she forgot to leave the faucet running in the bathroom above her garage. Just hours after single-digit temperatures started to warm up again, she was standing in her kitchen "preparing dinner when I heard the gushing of the water."

The pipes in the ceiling above the garage started to cave in, the pipes cracking from the freeze.

Heinrich was forced to turn off the valve in her yard, leaving her home without running water until she could get a plumber. 

"They couldn't come out for a few days so at first I just wanted to get my water turned on. So I was just willing to pay what needed to be paid," Heinrich say. "It was still expensive."

Copyright 2014 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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