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By the time you read this, it may already be a rainy morning in Mountain Home as the weekend kicks off. Rain may turn into snow as temperatures begin to plummet today. Saturday will be the last time we will likely see temperatures above freezing until Wednesday afternoon of next week.
Any snow that accumulates from the winter weather event on Sunday and Monday will be sticking around. But how much snow? That is the question on everyone’s minds, other than ‘how much bread and milk do I need?’
Based on several regional news forecasters from Springfield to Little Rock, as well as more official sources at the National Weather Service, Mountain Home residents can expect 4-8” of snow between Sunday and Monday.
Preparations for many have already started, including those at the City of Mountain Home’s Street Department.
“The street department is preparing our plows and sanders for the snow event this weekend,” Arnold Knox, Director of Planning and Engineering said in an email to the Observer. Those inside city limits can expect to see crews working the streets once the storm rolls in.
Knox said the street department is preparing for around 6” of snow and is hoping that Mountain Home does not receive any ice due to the lower temperatures that are forecasted for Sunday and Monday.
“As far as our department we are preparing for the worst, with everything ready to go on Sunday,” he said.
Readers may desire to tune into their favorite local or regional broadcasters on Saturday for more up-to-date weather information. The area can likely expect to see a Winter Storm Warning issued by the NWS by Saturday as well.
For those of us at home making preparations, we can top off some basics at the grocery store and ensure that water hoses are disconnected and install covers on outdoor faucets to prevent bursting pipes.
How to prevent frozen indoor pipes
As the temperature drops below freezing, safeguarding your home against the potential havoc of frozen pipes becomes a paramount concern. Adopting a proactive approach to prevent this cold-weather woe is not just about avoiding inconvenience, it’s a strategic move to save your pockets from the financial chill of repairs.
First, when it comes to shielding your pipes from the bitter cold, insulation is your ally.
Wrap vulnerable pipes, especially those residing in unheated areas such as attics and crawl spaces, with foam pipe insulation or heating tape. These materials serve as a formidable barrier against the biting cold, preventing it from infiltrating your plumbing infrastructure. By strategically layering your pipes with these insulating tools, you’re not just warding off the frost; you’re creating a cozy haven for your plumbing.
In addition to insulation, sealing off potential entry points for cold air is a prudent step in your frozen pipe prevention arsenal. Conduct a thorough inspection of your home’s perimeter, paying close attention to windows and doors. Seal any gaps or cracks with weather stripping or caulking to fortify your defenses against the relentless cold.
Maintaining a consistent indoor temperature is the linchpin of frostbite-free plumbing. Even when you’re away, keep the temperature set to a level that would make Jack Frost think twice before attempting to freeze your pipes– at least 65˚F if not warmer.
Open cabinet doors beneath sinks to allow the warmth of your home to circulate around the plumbing. This simple act is akin to wrapping your pipes in a snug blanket, ensuring they remain cozy and unfazed by the harsh winter conditions.
In the realm of preventative measures, an age-old tactic comes to the forefront: the trickle effect. Consider allowing a small, constant trickle (not just a drip!) of water to flow through faucets connected to susceptible pipes, especially plumbing in exterior-facing walls. The continuous movement of water discourages the formation of ice, acting as a force against the stagnancy that invites freezing.
So, gear up and fortify your abode – your pipes will thank you for the warmth. And if they don’t, then your wallet surely will, by potentially preventing a costly call to the plumber.
Stay warm, Mountain Home!