Man uses blowtorch to defrost frozen pipes, sets house on fire

Yeah, this is definitely not the recommended way to deal with frozen pipes.

If you want to rid your car’s windshield of ice and snow, pouring hot water on it isn’t the way to go. Following that same line of thinking, if your home’s pipes are frozen, a blowtorch might not be the best option.

One Henrico man attempted to thaw his home’s frozen pipes with a blowtorch Thursday afternoon, setting his home’s crawlspace on fire in the process.

Henrico Fire crews arrived on scene in the 4100 block of Roundtree Road to find smoke coming from the home, but fortunately the fire was already out.

“Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device,” [Henrico Fire spokesman Captain Daniel] Rosenbaum said about what not to do if your pipes freeze. “Heat from any of these devices can very easily set materials under a house on fire. Heat can travel along the pipes and set materials inside a wall on fire and smolder for hours before being discovered.”

Read more and get tips on how to prevent frozen pipes from WTVR-TV.

Photo: Henrico Fire

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Trevor Dickerson

Trevor Dickerson loves all things Richmond and manages RVANews’ West of the Boulevard and West End community sites.

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