As winter and sub-zero temperatures descend upon the country, freezing temperatures can burst pipes and result in flooding.

Fred Colley, a Mr. Rooter Plumbing operations manager, gave practical advice on how to best protect your home from Jack Frost’s fury.

So, how do you know if your pipes are freezing?

“Nine out of 10 times it will be the hot water that freezes up first,” Colley explained. He told CTV News Channel that if you notice the hot water pressure beginning to decrease then it’s a sign your pipes are starting to freeze.

Here are four ways to prevent massive damage in the cold months:

1. Do turn the heat up

“The best thing to do would be to turn the heat up in your house,” said Colley. While you might be trying to save money by keeping the heat low and wearing a sweater, Colley explained that not having the heat high enough is what causes most of the problems he sees.

2. Do make sure your pipes are insulated

Insulated pipes help reduce heat loss and keep water from freezing when temperatures drop. It can also save energy and decrease your heating bill.

3. Do keep doors open

“If you have rooms in your house where the pipes are on the outside walls, in the cold zones, keep the bathroom doors open … so the heat can get in there,” Colley advised.

He also says to keep cabinets open.

4. Don’t keep water running

While the trick of keeping water running at all times does work, Colley doesn’t recommend it.

“You could have your water on, you could be sound asleep, that drain could for some reason back up … the sink overflows and you end up with a flood anyways,” he said.