Frozen Pipe Problems

, Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Tue, December 17 2013 at 5:21 PM, Updated: Tue, December 17 2013 at 5:40 PM

Frozen pipes are still causing headaches, and expensive messes for home owners...the situation is also keeping plumbers and insurance agents busy.

Insurance agent Lance Lesueur says he's working on about 40 water damage claims...and he expects more.

"We've had full houses going completely, sheet rock, ceilings, everything going down to the bottom of the house - which would be a total loss, almost like a fire loss."

Erik Pedersen of Fairway Plumbing says there have been two busy periods.

The first came with the first blast of cold weather, thawing broken pipes...

"And then as the Sun warms up, the ones we couldn't get to thaw out to prevent the breaks, they break on their own, and then we just scramble to repair broken pipes."

A broken pipe at this Klamath Falls Dairy Queen caused so much damage, the owners have chosen to do a total remodel.

Lance Lesueur says most home owner policies do cover damage from broken pipes, with one caveat...

"And that caveat is, if efforts have been made to protect, or in other words, if you've left the heat on in your house."

And Erik Pedersen is just trying to keep up...

"We try to get as many as we can done, but as many as we get done, the next day it just grows."

Pedersen says unprotected outdoor spigots are the most common cause for frozen pipe problems. 

Pedersen says at 2 dollar insulation cover can help to prevent freezing and breaks later on.

What do you think? Sound off on our Facebook page and on Twitter, or leave a comment below.

About the Author

Lyle Ahrens

KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's.  He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.

Lyle's job history is quite colorful.  He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand.  A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer.  In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.

Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.  "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain.  Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".

When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.

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