BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - When the temperature dips below freezing, homeowners usually remember to wrap the pipes outside of their homes.
Experts advise business owners do the same at commercial buildings but plumbers report many of them forget.
Plumbers were busy on Thursday tackling busted pipes and replacing broken pieces that emerged at area businesses during Wednesday night's hard freeze.
Butch Taylor, a plumber with Louis Mechanical Contractors, had to get a grip on a fountain that formed on the pipes outside of E Federal Credit Union on Market Street.
"This is a broken part right there. This is actually supposed to be attached, and the freeze busted it. There are more pieces down inside it here, which is broken," Taylor said.
Taylor said insulated blankets or even throwing a garbage can over the pipe would have prevented the mess. But not all structures are as simple to protect.
The pipes that control the sprinkler system inside the Bon Carre building on Florida Boulevard busted in several places. Icicles that likely formed overnight were still standing in the afternoon sun.
Plumber, Billy Dupuy, said the damage was so bad he had to call the fire department.
"You have people safety involved in this. It will all have to be shut down and put on fire watch so if something happens when I shut it down the fire department is here save everyone's life," Dupuy said.
While not all breaks are as serious, plumbers said freezing temperatures could bust your budget if you do not act ahead of time.
Taylor advises that homeowners wrap their pipes, especially if their home is elevated, let their faucets drip over night, and if they are leaving town, turn off the water supply.
"If something happens, if there is a power failure and the heat goes off in your house, every pipe in your house is susceptible to breakage including your toilet and anything in your house that has water in it," Taylor said.
Plumbers said local businesses are keeping them busy now, but once the ice melts and the pipes thaw they will likely begin making house calls.