Extreme cold has led to increased demand for plumbing and heating professionals in the Shuswap. (File photo)

Extreme cold has led to increased demand for plumbing and heating professionals in the Shuswap. (File photo)

Shuswap plumbers busy fixing frozen water lines caused by extreme cold

Environment Canada has declared B.C.’s Interior is under an extreme cold warning

Shuswap plumbing and heating professionals are seeing demand heat up during the extreme cold weather that’s hit the region recently.

On Dec. 28, Aspire Plumbing & Heating’s office manager Tanya Schumacher said a 12-person waiting list had amassed before noon.

She said all of Aspire’s tradespeople were out on the job at that time, working hard to keep up.

“Our guys are run off their feet swamped,” she said, adding most calls they’ve received are for frozen water lines and broken pipes — though some have been about furnaces that have stopped working too.

Schumacher said she feels badly people are having these problems over the holidays. Since a couple of Aspire’s employees are on their holidays, it makes it a little tougher to keep up as well, she said.

Sergei Grigorjew, co-owner of Ecoflow Plumbing and Heating, also said he’s received an increased number of calls.

“More than usual for sure, but not too crazy,” he added. He’s seen more demand for service in modular homes, some of which he said aren’t as well-equipped for frigid temperatures.

One way to avoid frozen pipes is to install heat trace wires/cables, said Grigorjew.

“It’s a wire with electrical inside that gets wrapped around a pipe. It has a sensor, so if the temperature gets close to freezing, it automatically provides power to the wire and heats the pipe,” he said.

Another frozen-pipe-avoiding tip Grigorjew shared was to double check if your garden hose is still connected. If it is, the water line it’s connected to will slowly freeze farther and farther into a dwelling, as it’s still open.

Grigorjew said he still sees houses with the garden hose connected in winter.

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