Bruno? Lin? Maybe you'll have answers to this one for me. I worked nightshift over the weekend and it's been in the single digits here. The boss told me to let the water run slightly so the pipes wouldn't freeze in the upstairs bath. I *thought* I was supposed to let the cold drip because that was the one that was more likely to freeze and she said she thought that was right, too. (Knock wood, we haven't had problems with pipes freezing even when it gets to be in the 40's in our place. I'm thinking because our water pipes run right past the furnace and probably heat up quickly, but this is why I was unsure of which spigot to let drip.)
Anywho, the first two nights, I didn't have a problem. Last night, however, the HOT WATER froze. The cold water was running on all three floors and the hot was running on the lower two. (She has a gas water heater that is always heating. It's not on any sort of timer.)
I'm thinking--and this is what I'm not sure about--that if she loosened the pressure on the spigot upstairs and waited until the day warmed up, the pipe would probably unfreeze on it's own and that she wouldn't even have to bother to call anyone in to unthaw it. Is that correct or will allowing it to unthaw like that cause problems?
I don't understand why it freezes on the HOTTEST floor? Hot air rises and the upstairs bathroom is always one of the warmest rooms in the house. Is it because the water has to travel the farther to the third floor?
The pipe involved is on an INside wall in the bathroom, but when it comes downstairs, it's on an outside wall for the first floor, then inside again in the basement. Strange thing is that when I first began working there, the pipe was on an outside wall in the bathroom and we had no problems whatsoever. Then the boss hired some two bit jackass to re-do her bathroom and he moved the pipe to the other side (the inside wall) for a shower, and we've had problems ever since. Two years ago he came and SUPPOSEDLY wrapped the pipe with insulation and the wire that heats up and it was turned "on," but it still froze. Ok, help!