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Insulating ABOVE water line

sarajoesmom's picture

We are in the process of building a new garage, and unfortunately hired the worst contractor in the world of contractors.  He has pretty much left us in the position of fixing most of what he has done, and with a lien against our property for the cost of all the material, since he didn’t pay for any of it.  

Did you have a question? (post #216289, reply #1 of 5)

Did you have a question?


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

It cut off 1/2 of my post! (post #216289, reply #2 of 5)

Y’all must think I am a nut... half of my original post didn’t show up....  LOL.    Here is my question... one of the things this guy DID do was to grade the site in front of the garage so we could pour a concrete apron going up to the garage doors.  Unfortunately, the area he graded goes right across the water line from the street to our house.  The line was buried about 3 feet deep, and now is only 1 foot deep.  Is there anything we can do to protect the pipe from freezing without digging up the line and retrenching to bury it deeper?  We are pouring a 5” concrete apron - but I understand that concrete is even less of an insulator than soil.  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.  

In some cases you can place a (post #216289, reply #3 of 5)

In some cases you can place a layer of insulating foam above the pipe, spreading out several feet in both directions.  But you'd have to check with an expert in local codes and practices.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Pretty much anything that (post #216289, reply #4 of 5)

Pretty much anything that will help, insulation or heat tape,  is going to involve digging around the pipe. Since you have to dig anyway I'd dig it up and bury it deeper.

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

It's not necessary to dig (post #216289, reply #5 of 5)

It's not necessary to dig below the pipe.  Insulation placed above the pipe will capture heat rising from the earth and keep the pipe warm.  Insulating all around the pipe can actually be worse, because there's nothing to keep the pipe warm.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville