Tucson is widely known for its mild winters and golf all year long. Most people come here to get out of the cold, but for those of us here last winter, we know there wasn’t much escaping the unusually cold weather. With uncommon snow by November and record lows in February, it was a winter Tucson won’t soon forget.
It’s understandable to think when it gets cold that pipes will freeze. What happened with a lot of the plumbing in Tucson last winter was more due to the length of the freeze. It didn’t just get cold, it stayed cold and the longer it stays cold the more your pipes are at risk of freezing and bursting. Tucson wasn’t prepared for two to three nights of subfreezing weather and the evidence of plumbing issues remained for weeks after. Residents were faced with frozen pipes to their homes and irrigation systems. Tucson plumbers were quick to respond, doing the necessary repairs around town. The immediate, high demand for plumbing supplies caused Tucson’s stores to run out of the materials required to fix the pipes, actually causing some residents to be out of water for several weeks. This unexpected hard freeze didn’t just affect residents; Tucson businesses also felt the chill, with hundreds of backflow units needing replacements or repairs in the weeks following the freeze.