By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) –– Plumbers are in high demand as homeowners contend with frozen water pipes.

The phones have been ringing almost non-stop at Hutchinson Plumbing Heating and Cooling since late last week.

“Not only for frozen pipes, but for heating repair service and it has just climbed steadily since the front has taken hold,” said owner Tom Hutchinson.

He says his crews have been wearing out hair dryers in their effort to unclog water pipes that have been exposed to the icy air.

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Hutchinson says they are bracing for another round of emergency calls after the weather warms, and many of those frozen pipes thaw out and burst.

“Lot of damage, particularly if it’s a second floor situation that’s going to cascade down onto the first floor,” he said. “No matter where it is it’s trouble for the homeowner.”

Eric Slifkin, owner of a Guaranteed Plumbing & Heating, says there are ways to avoid disaster.

“Keep the water at a trickle and that’s the best advice I can give to anybody,” he said.

Slifkin also says insulate the piping and make sure you close up any areas that are drafty.

“The wind chill, the breeze is what really does it,” he said.

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