TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Freezing temperatures mean freezing pipes, especially for Florida plumbing that isn’t prepared for what’s coming. That means you have to prepare instead.

“Anything that’s exposed to the outdoors,” said Joseph Gonzalez. “That’s going to be exposed to the freezing temperatures for a while, you need to protect them.”

Gonzalez is the president of the Henry Gonzalez Plumbing Company. He said many houses in Florida have outdoor pipes and for the most part, that’s fine.

“We don’t have a frost line or a freeze line that we have to bury our lines all the way down,” Gonzalez explained. “We can go 12 inches down and that’s sufficient. It’s always been sufficient because we normally have 80-degree weather.”

There are two main ways to keep your pipes safe: foam and dripping faucets.

He suggested Armaflex foam from any home improvement store — it’s built to keep pipes warm during freezing nights. Just wrap it around them and you’re all set. If you’re more the DIY type, thick blankets and cardboard boxes should do the trick.

“And one of the things that you can do is to run your faucet,” Gonzalez said. “Just a drip.”

Since running water doesn’t freeze as easily as standing water, letting it drip overnight will help. Gonzalez suggested putting a water filter or container beneath the dripping water so you don’t waste any money.

“We have an expanded crew on standby that’s a mix of city employees and contractors — larger than normal,” said Sonia Quinones. “That will be on-call all weekend long.”

A concern this weekend for the City of Tampa Water Department is aging pipes.

“A lot of our pipes are 80 years old or 100 years old,” Quinones said. “So they’ve been withstanding that pressure decades.”

Sonia Quinones is the supervisor of communications and water conservation for the City of Tampa Water Department. She had a final tip for new Floridians, in case of a leak.

“Find out where your water shutoff is for the house,” said Quinones. “A lot of residents, actually — especially we have a lot of new homeowners in the city that have absolutely no idea where that shutoff is to their home.”

Both Quinones and Gonzalez agreed: better to spend the time and energy now, preparing your pipes for the freeze than to spend the time and energy taking care of them when they freeze and burst.