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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As temperatures continue to drop, your home could be at risk of frozen pipes. If those pipes freeze, the damage could come with a hefty price tag. 

Jody Gardner, a field lead at Anthony Plumbing Heating and Cooling, said frozen pipes can ruin a home. 

“It causes a lot of damage. It ruins houses, ruins ceilings, ruins flooring,” he said.

Every year thousands of area homes suffer from not preparing for winter weather properly.

“An eighth-inch crack can spill more than 250 gallons of water a day. This can result in thousands of dollars in damage to floors, carpets and furniture,” said Chris Pilcic, a State Farm spokesman.

“The average homeowner claim was a little over $8,000 in (Missouri). Expensive in Kansas, too. The average homeowner claim in Kansas was about $9,900,” he added.  

Here is a five-step process that will lessen you chances of having frozen pipes. 

  • Let cold water drip overnight, preferably from faucets on an outside wall.
  • Open cabinet doors allowing heat to get to uninsulated pipes under sinks near exterior walls.
  • Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature day and night.
  • Insulate exposed water pipes, such as those in crawl spaces, basements, or near outside walls.
  • Disconnect hoses.

In addition to taking these steps, Pilcic encourages you to meet with your insurance agent to make sure that you are covered.

“The steps that you take now could help you whether this winter storm a little bit better,” Pilcic said.