How to Prepare for an Emergency
Remove garden hoses from their spigots. Cut off the water supply to outdoor faucets before the frosty weather arrives. Leave the faucets turned on so the pipes are drained before winter.
Insulate vulnerable pipes. Using heat tape or heat cable (sold in hardware stores), wrap uninsulated water supply lines anywhere heat doesn’t reach, such as the garage, crawl spaces, or under cabinets.
Allow water to trickle through pipes. Even during freezing spells, regularly let a little water―cold or hot―to run through the pipes. Set the thermostat at 65 degrees, and open the cabinets under sinks to expose them to as much heat as possible. If you’re leaving for an extended period during the winter, turn off the main water supply, set the thermostat at no lower than 55 degrees, and keep the cabinets open.