We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

hose connected, burst pipe?

guidway
guidway asked
on
761 Views
Last Modified: 2013-12-28
Science question: I live in the  south east U.S. We don't usually have sub freezing temperatures, however when we do, the local news always says to disconnect external water hoses to prevent waterpipes from bursting.
I'm trying to understand if there is any true science to back up this claim. Why would the water hose itself have any affect on pipes bursting?  Wouldn't it only occur if water freezes between the faucet and the pipes and expands and cracks the pipes? The hose connected doesn't seem relevant.
Any science to back this up?
Comment
Watch Question

Scott FellDeveloper
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Fellow
Most Valuable Expert 2013
Commented:
This one is on us!
(Get your first solution completely free - no credit card required)
UNLOCK SOLUTION
Dave BaldwinFixer of Problems
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Most Valuable Expert 2014
Commented:
This one is on us!
(Get your first solution completely free - no credit card required)
UNLOCK SOLUTION
Paul SauvéRetired
CERTIFIED EXPERT

Commented:
Yes - the scientific explanation is that water expands when it freezes.

What I do is disconnect the hose from the faucet, close the valve indoors and leave the faucet open! But then again, you may not have the indoor valve on that water line if you live in the South!

Not only can the hose burst, but the water pipes as well.

Author

Commented:
Padas/Dave,
Thanks for the links.  I read them but don't see explanations for why removing the hose matters. Just basically saying to do it or it could cause broken pipes. Why though? Would it be back pressure from the hose?

Dave, I don't know.  Maybe it is just to keep the hose itself from bursting and they are just lumping it in with the pipes. I'm not sure what they mean. Just wanted to see if there could be a reason the hose could matter.

Author

Commented:
Paul, How would water freezing in the hose and expanding cause the pipes to burst?  Or am I misunderstanding what you mean?

Sorry guys not trying to be difficult just trying to understand. Thanks for the help!
Scott FellDeveloper
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Fellow
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
I am no scientist, but if your hose is completely empty and your spigot never drips, you are probably ok.   Chances are you have water in your hose and there could be a slow drip you don't realize.  Now water could be backed up in that area, freeze, expand and do damage.
Scott FellDeveloper
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Fellow
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
Dave, I gave it a standing 10 count and didn't see anything before I posted.
Dave BaldwinFixer of Problems
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Most Valuable Expert 2014

Commented:
No problem @padas, I was on the phone.  @guidway, the whole point is to let all the water drain out that would otherwise freeze.  No water = no problem.
CERTIFIED EXPERT

Commented:
"I'm trying to understand if there is any true science to back up this claim.

The problem is not science but English.  Newpapers do not always write exactly as they intend.
The links given tell you the science.
Retired
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Commented:
This one is on us!
(Get your first solution completely free - no credit card required)
UNLOCK SOLUTION
ozo
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Most Valuable Expert 2014
Top Expert 2015

Commented:
Outside hoses would be most exposed to freezing temperatures, and ice blockages within the hose could prevent relief of pressure by flow along the pipe and out open faucets.
Scott FellDeveloper
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Fellow
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
I think Paul has give you the most complete answer so far http:#aa39744312

Author

Commented:
Thanks again to everyone! Paul's answer really helped me to understand it and makes sense.

I've always disconnected it anyway (just in case), but never understood really why so started questioning it. This helped a lot!
Unlock the solution to this question.
Join our community and discover your potential

Experts Exchange is the only place where you can interact directly with leading experts in the technology field. Become a member today and access the collective knowledge of thousands of technology experts.

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

OR

Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.