HOW TO THAW FROZEN METAL PIPES
Passing low voltage, high current AC
electricity through a frozen water pipe is a quick way of thawing
it. With this method it is possible to thaw iron or copper pipes
buried in the ground or concealed in building walls.
This method requires that there be an
area of unfrozen water under standard pressure on one side of the frozen
area and an open faucet on the other (downstream) side.
With an Electric Pipe Thawer it is only
necessary to heat the frozen pipe enough to melt a thin film of ice on the inside
of the pipe. The warmer water under standard pressure in the pipe before
the blockage will seep through the melted film and quickly melt the rest
of the ice. Once sufficient ice is melted a flow will be resumed towards
the open faucet downstream of the blockage.
See our on-line
350 Owners Manual for step-by-step instructions.
SOME COMMON PROBLEMS
Cables stay cold. Pipe does not thaw.
Do you have power? Check fuses.
Is the circuit breaker switched on?
Do you have a good connection?
Are the pipes clean at the connection?
Are both clamps on the same pipe?
Has the thermal protector tripped?
Is there a rubber coupling in the line?
Is there plastic pipe in the line?
Has the ice pushed the joints apart?
2. Cables get warm. Pipe does not thaw.
Are clamps on pipe, not on curb cover?
Are the pipes clean under the clamps?
Are cables sized properly? (Larger cable must use larger wire
3. Cables get hot. Pipe does not thaw.
Is there water pressure in pipe?
Is the source of water pressure frozen?
Is source water pump operating?
Do the clamps cover all of frozen area?
Can the current go more than one way from clamp to clamp?
4. Good connections are required.
Clean all pipes before connecting the cables. Make both pipe connections
before plugging unit into receptacle. Make sure all connections are
tight to prevent arcing at the clamps. Loose connections also get hot
and reduce current flow. Caution: Uncoil the cables. Do not leave any
cable coiled up or placed on steel objects as the heating in the pipe
will be reduced.
5. If a good connection is made, the pipe and cables will vibrate
with a 60 cycle hum that you can feel with your hand. After all
connections are made and the unit is plugged in, switch the circuit
The times in the chart are approximate and under ideal
conditions. Actual times will vary depending upon type of pipe,
diameter, gauge and length of cable, etc.
|350 AMP OUTPUT
||450 AMP OUTPUT
Note: Since copper will not heat up
as fast as iron pipe, allow about a 30 percent longer thawing time.
Note: Longer cables must also be a larger gauge. If smaller
diameter cables are used, current will be reduced.