04 Nov Have a Sprinkler System? First Frost Signals Time to Winterize
The first frost of the season does more than just signal the inevitable return of winter, it also serves as a good reminder to winterize sprinkler systems and backflow prevention devices. If left unprotected, any water inside the systems can cause parts to freeze and crack, which can be costly to clean up and repair.
While the easiest and most sure-fire approach is to hire an irrigation professional, there are 4 simple steps to winterize your systems:
- Turn off the water to the system. All systems are designed differently, but the shut-off valve is often located near your water meter. If you have a backflow prevention device, you’ll need to make sure you close any valves supplying it, too.
- Turn off timers and controllers. If your system is automatic, make sure you turn off any timers and controllers to keep it off for the winter.
- Drain the water. Depending on how your system is set up, you will need to drain any remaining water from pipes and structures. Some systems allow you to manually drain them, some have automatic draining systems, and some allow you to blow the water out with an air compressor. If you aren’t sure what type of system you have, it is best to contact an irrigation professional.
- Insulate any exposed parts. Exposed pipes, sprinkler heads, faucets, and any other parts that are exposed need to be insulated to prevent freezing.