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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Dec. 11, 2013)– Colder temperatures are keeping plumbers busy, fixing leaks in people’s homes.

Jack Hope with Hope Plumbing said the changing temperatures have been causing issues. He said cold water going into people’s houses can make pipes and water heaters contract and expand, which could result with those pipes and heaters leaking. Hope said this is not something you can necessarily prevent, but it is something you can lookout for before it is too late.

“(You should) have a look around (and) see if you (notice) anything that’s started to drip. (It’s) better to catch it earlier than later,” Hope said.

Brook Avey said her heater started leaking about a month ago. She avoided fixing it until today. She said her water was too cold and it was unbearable this entire week. She called Hope Plumbing for help.

“You just want hot water when you take a shower in the freezing cold,” Avey said.

Besides leaks this time of year, Jack Hope said now is also the time for people to take measures to prevent their pipes from freezing during the winter. Turn your kitchen faucet on slightly -especially if it’s near a window and open the cabinets underneath.

If you have exposed pipes in your basement, keep a fan or your furnace running to prevent cold spots from forming. If your main water line is behind a wall, leave a little bit of water running through it.

One of the biggest problems homeowners encounter is when they do not disconnect their hose from the outside faucet.  People forget to do it all winter and it could mean a big mess, when they use it again in the spring.

“We’ve seen some huge disasters,” Hope said.

Hope said those disasters lead to thousands of dollars in damages and ruined basements.

Hope said people, who live in apartment communities, should follow similar guidelines. He said people’s best option is to check with their property managers about steps they should follow. Some apartment communities have start residents know to let their faucets drip to prevent pipes from freezing.