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Whether you are about to renovate your home or you just don’t understand what the previous owner was thinking you’re probably wondering, “Can I run water pipes through my attic?” We've researched the best practice for installing water pipes in a home to answer whether pipes can be run through the attic.
Running a water pipe through your attic is possible and actually much more common than you might expect. Depending on where you live and the climate that your home is exposed to, indoor attic piping may be the best and safest option for a property owner.
Throughout this article, we will give you an insight into the many benefits of running your water pipes through your attic. Please keep reading as we discuss the cost-effective ways you, as a property owner, can maintain pipes and provide recommendations on best practices for the initial installation.
Installing Water Pipes in the Attic
We have all heard horror stories about people’s pipes bursting because they were not insulated properly or could no longer withstand the outdoor conditions. Most issues with piping actually occur outside due to freezing temperatures or environmental conditions. Climate definitely plays a major role in the logistics of installing your water pipes, but an attic installation does provide some protection from the elements. Insulation is another significant step in maintaining and preventing pipe related issues that one may encounter down the road.
Should Water Pipes be Insulated?
Unless you want to wait an eternity for hot or cold water, we recommend insulating all water pipes within your home. Another important reason to insulate your water pipes is potential freezing during winter months and the many costs incurred due to repair or replacement of burst pipes. Insulating pipes within your property is not just for colder climates but also recommended for warmer areas.
What Is The Best Type Of Water Pipe Insulation?
The recommended insulation is long-lasting and the most cost-effective, foam sleeves that can easily be wrapped around any piping. The foam essentially acts like a sweater around your pipes to minimize the chances of your pipes freezing or sweating. Foam is an extremely durable material and rarely needs replacing, which comes as a bonus for anyone facing this dilemma.
When it comes to sealing the insulation with foam or polyethylene, one can expect to pay around two dollars for about six feet of insulation wrap or foam. You can find these at any home improvement store or even online. Assess for any pipe leakage before slapping on an insulated wrap because there may be a larger problem at hand.
How Do You Insulate Water Lines In The Attic?
When it comes to insulating water lines, the most common practice is keeping the pipes as low as possible to encourage access to heat from below your pipes. The warmer the area, the fewer chances of a pipe freeze in colder months and climates.
Next, you are going to want to seal all of the gaps and cracks within the walls of your attic that surround your pipes to avoid outside temperatures making their way inside to inevitably freeze the pipes. Sealing goes for warmer climates too. The warmer climates can lead to pipes sweating and condensation build-up in your attic, which is also a situation all of us want to avoid. The spacing and placement of pipes can really make a huge difference in how your pipes react and age within your home.
How Do You Stop Condensation On Water Pipes?
Condensation on water pipes can lead to water damage and damage to insulation within your attic walls or floors. Foam sleeves work in both ways for insulation to prevent freezing and condensation, which is another reason we recommend it. The area of the pipe that has a moisture issue should be wrapped with the foam sleeve and sealed as tightly as possible. That essentially locks out any moisture from coming in or going out of the pipe while keeping your attic and home water and moisture-free.
The drier the attic and pipes, the better. According to some warmer climate homeowners, placing a dehumidifier in the attic can help combat the moisture coming in from outside during those hot summer months. The key to having a low stress, low maintenance water line is placement and insulation.
Routing water lines through the attic is not unusual. Hopefully, you can now make the best decision for your situation and unique budget. Water pipes can be a costly burden if not installed and placed correctly. Insulating water pipes is key to avoid broken pipes and damp attics. Remember, the foam sleeves are highly recommended, affordable methods to insulate water pipes that present easy installation for any DIYer.
Before you get started, please read our related post for more great tips on plumbing insulation and types of pipes: