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With colder temperatures upon us, the Village would like to take this opportunity to provide a few tips on how to prevent water pipes from freezing up.

As we all know, Chicagoland winters can be frigid and unpredictable. As winter temperatures drop below freezing, frost begins to penetrate into the ground. Water services for homes and businesses are typically buried between 5-6 feet deep, keeping them below the winter frost line. However, during extended periods of extreme cold, frost could reach deeper levels into the ground. Frost penetrations this deep can pose serious problems for buried utilities, especially water pipes.

When frost depths reach buried water services, they become surrounded in frozen earth, making water service disruption very possible. Smaller diameter lines (typical water service is ¾” up to 2” depending on home) are more likely to freeze than larger ones. This means that the water service running from your home or business out to the street is more prone to freezing than the larger water mains in the street. As water freezes, it expands in size. Freezing water inside pipes can expand and stop water from flowing to your home or business, or cause the water line to break.

The best way to protect the water service that runs from your property to the street is to not let it freeze in the first place. Allowing a small amount of COLD water to run in your home or business keeps water flowing, which helps prevent the pipes from freezing.

Some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding frozen water service lines are provided here. If you have any further questions, please contact the Hinsdale Public Services Department at (630) 789-7041.