Frigid Temps Bring Water Main Breaks, Freezing Pipes

Be Prepared: Prevention Tips for Household Pipes

| News Release



LAUREL, MD – February 12, 2015: The frigid weather arriving tonight and lasting through the weekend makes household pipes and WSSC pipes – especially the older ones -- vulnerable to breaks and leaks.

Remember: WSSC is responsible for water mains in the street and the connections to your home or business, but not the pipes on your property. Property owners are responsible for pipes on their property and inside their homes. Please call a plumber if pipes break on your property. For prevention tips and what to do if your pipes freeze, visit

Since water temperature lags behind air temperature changes, water main breaks may occur one to two days after the cold. That’s why WSSC tracks the Potomac River temperature and the number of water main breaks on a daily basis. Check out the chart.

If you suspect a water main break, customers should report it to WSSC’s 24/7 emergency call center: 301-206-4002. Breaks can also be reported via WSSC’s mobile app. Download it today.

WSSC is prepared for the winter weather with the technology, crews and equipment to quickly pinpoint system breaks and make repairs around the clock. Last month, WSSC repaired 408* breaks and leaks.

Our website features an interactive map that shows current repair jobs and allows users to search by an address. Also, WSSC’s Customer Notification System (CNS) alerts customers via text and/or email when breaks affect service and daily routines. Customers register online for the Customer Notification System.

About a quarter of WSSC’s 5,600 miles of water mains are over 50 years old. The Commission is currently replacing 55 miles of water pipe each year.

*Numbers may vary slightly from original reporting after work orders are closed out.

WSSC Water is the proud provider of safe, seamless and satisfying water services, making the essential possible every day for our neighbors in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. We work to deliver our best because it’s what our customers expect and deserve.

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