The Main Stream

Nov 9, 2012 9:40 PM by John Patrick

Hard freeze watch in place; protecting your pets, plants and pipes

TUCSON - As our first significant cool down of the season makes its way here it's time to prepare the house for freezing conditions.

Sub freezing temperatures aren't expected in the Tucson-metro quite yet but some hard freeze watches have been posted for Graham, Greenlee and Cochise Counties come Sunday night, according to Meteorologist John Patrick. Some locations including Willcox, Benson and Sierra Vista could see temperatures drop down to near or below 28 degrees by early Monday morning. These frigid temperatures could have a chilling effect on your pets, plants and pipes.

There are several things that you can do to prevent the freezing and possible bursting of outdoor pipes. Any exposed piping should be insulated, drained or allowed to drip slowly to prevent a freeze up and possible expensive situation. Forrest Allen, from Ace Hardware, explains they carry many insulators from foil wraps to electric heat tape to keep your pipes safe.

Allen says, "Gages of foam insulation are very inexpensive and can save you hundreds even thousands depending on the where the damage happens."

Frost sensitive plants are also vulnerable to the sub freezing temperatures. When temperatures dip into the 20s is when you really need to start worrying about your vegetation, according to Sophia Montes with Silverbell Nursery. On really cold nights bring the plants inside if possible or cover them with a sheet or a frost tarp.

For bigger trees, Montes shares a little trick, "You want to wrap Christmas lights around the trunks and larger branches and keep those on." This should offer the tree just enough heat to keep it alive through the cold nights.

Of course, don't forget about man's best friend. All pets should be brought in or have some sort of shelter on these cold nights.



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