The weather has turned cold here in the Midwest and the need to water our lawns is gone until next spring. However, merely shutting down your sprinkler system isn’t enough to ensure it will work the next time you need it. You must also winterize it completely to prevent it from freezing, expanding, and then cracking your underground pipes. Our team at DeFazio Company has been serving the Cleveland, OH, area since 2007, and today we’re discussing the basics of winterizing your sprinkler system.
Step 1: Shut Off Water Supply
Before you do anything else, you must completely shut off the water supply to your sprinkler system so that there is no longer even a trickle of water flowing through. Because moisture can freeze and damage your system, the goal of sprinkler winterization is to make sure the pipes are completely dry. Additionally, if you have an automatic sprinkler system, don’t forget to reprogram or shut down your controller to prevent any accidental reactivation.
Step 2: Insulate
After you have turned off the water supply, make sure you protect the main shut-off valve by insulating it and any other above ground pipes or valves. Wrap them with foam insulation tape and seal with plastic. Self-sticking foam insulation tape from your local home improvement store works well to properly insulate and protect your pipes and valves.
Step 3: Drain the System
As stated above, the goal is to completely dry out the pipes to prevent freezing and damage. Therefore, you need to open all the valves and drain the water from the system manually, including the backflow device. Depending on the type of system you have, you may be able to automatically drain the water and relieve the water pressure in the system. Some also use a blow-out method whereby you force compressed air through the sprinkler system to blow out the excess water. However, this could potentially damage your system if you’re not careful!
Call in the Experts
To be sure your sprinkler system is properly winterized, call in the experts from DeFazio Company. Since 2007, we have been installing and maintaining first-class lawn irrigation systems for both residential and commercial customers. Contact us today at (440) 652-6545 or request an estimate online.