I have a hot and cold pipe that is located in an attic space above my garage that is accessible from the back side. The problem is this pipes are running through the wall studs and keep freezing in cold weather. I have this pipes insulated with pipe insulation as well as wall insulation and a second layer of wall insulation that runs over the studs. Is there any way to put some sort of heat tape on this pipe even though it runs through the walls?

  • 6
    Is one side of the wall against conditioned space? If so, the solution is to remove insulation, at least in that direction. – isherwood Jan 31 '19 at 16:06
  • Just saying.... I had a pipe like that that would give me fits. The problem was, there was a tiny gap in the insulation that would allow cold air to get to a 90 deg. elbow. Took me forever to figure out why it would freeze up sometimes. Point is it just takes a tiny gap to make trouble. – Greg Nickoloff Feb 1 '19 at 19:53
  • 2
    As a quick workaround, leave the water running at least a little - both H&C. That will reduce the likelihood of freezing & buy you some time. – UuDdLrLrSs Mar 2 '19 at 20:41

Most garages have no insulation in outer walls or in the attic. If the pipes are exposed in the attic (especially near an outer wall), they might be freezing in that area.


Insulating a pipe in a cold space does pretty much nothing. Insulation simply slows the transfer of heat. The only way to insulate pipes is to have them on the warm side of the insulation and if your garage isn't heated you're not going to be able to solve it with insulation. If your climate is not normally freezing you could heat the space with a small electric heater (plug in radiators are safest) on the cold days. Otherwise you need to relocate the pipes or your building envelope so that the pipes are within your conditioned space. It's a potentially serious issue as frozen pipes often burst.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.