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Frozen Water Lines

Prevent your water lines from freezing in cold weather

When winter temperatures hit extreme lows, the City of Lethbridge reminds residents to take extra measures to protect their home and prevent water pipes from freezing.

Why do my pipes freeze? 
There are many factors that affect pipes freezing, such as the temperature outside, the temperature of the river water, pipe location and depth, and frost.

What do I do if my pipes freeze?

If a pipe breaks inside someone's home, they should turn off the value where the water service comes into their home and call a plumber if they need help.

If someone experiences a watermain break (City water source coming into their home), call Lethbridge 311 immediately.

Check for drafts

  • ​Check around your pipes to ensure that there are no cold drafts coming in from the outside.
  • Look around where your pipes enter the house, in the basement, attic, storage areas, crawl spaces, and garage.

Check your hot water tank

  • ​While checking your pipes in the basement, ensure that the hot water tank is properly heated.

Winterize Outdoor Taps

  • ​Winterize your outdoor taps and other water features to prevent the cold from getting in to the pipes.
  • This included turning off the water line to outside faucets.

Keep your temperature up

  • ​It is recommended you keep your thermostat above 15 degrees Celsius.
  • If you are leaving for an extended period of time, you may need to check with your insurance company if this needs to be maintained other ways.

Insulate your pipes

  • ​Hot and cold pipes should be insulated if they are in a cold area.
  • Try looking for pipe sleeves, heat tape, or heat cables.
  • Allow heat from the house to warm unprotected pipes by opening doors and cabinets that cover these areas.

Run water through
your pipes

  • ​Regularly run water through pipes by either everyday use or running a steady, pencil-width stream of water.
  • The utility owner is responsible for any increases in water usage.

​Seal your home

  • ​Prevent drafts from coming in through windows and doors.
  • Check any locations where there may be additional drafts coming in.

Open Doors

  • Allow heat from the house to warm unprotected pipes by opening doors and cabinets that cover these areas.



For Public Inquiries:

Call 311 |  Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.