Winter Preparedness Tips for Water

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Pentair Water Solutions
Pentair Water Solutions

01/08/2022

Winter Preparedness Tips for Water

As temperatures drop this winter, it's time to think about water-related issues associated with cold weather. By being proactive, you can keep your home's water supply ready for whatever curveball winter throws at you. Learn about these common winter plumbing problems and how to prevent them.

How to Drain Pipes for Winter

By learning how to drain pipes for the winter, you should remove all traces of water to prevent them from freezing and causing problems. You’d only need to worry about draining your pipes if you were planning to be away from your residence for an extended period of time. It's a straightforward process:

  1. Turn off your main water valve — it could be located inside or outside your house.
  2. Turn on all of the sinks in the home. The goal is to get all remaining water out of the pipes. Start with the top floor and move down.
  3. Don't forget about outdoor faucets! Use a hose to clear outdoor lines.
  4. Make sure the water is all gone with an air compressor. Again, start on the top floor, and blow in each drain to ensure you force out all the water.

What To Do When The Furnace is Leaking Water in Winter

Condensation is the main culprit when the furnace is leaking water in winter. Typically, this drains out, but occasionally these drains get clogged from a frozen pipe. If you see water backing up by these drain,s your drain pipe may be frozen.

Just like with your water supply lines, wrap the furnace pipes up with insulation to ensure they don't get too cold. If it's too late for that and you already have a leak, you'll want to work to thaw the pipe. If the pipe is easily accessible, try getting out the hair dryer or heating pad, then call a technician for help.

Managing Snow Storm Power Outages

If the power goes out in winter, you'll want to turn off your water main and drain your water using the steps we highlighted above, so it doesn't freeze in your pipes. Rather than washing it all down the drain, collect it in bottles, jugs, and buckets so you can use it for drinking and showering.
But what about flushing toilets? For this, you can use melted snow from outside.

Closing Your Home for Extended Winter Travel

Are you one of those lucky snowbirds who head south for the winter? If so, you'll need to winterize your home to prevent issues. The main goal is to get rid of all water in your systems—without chemicals. In addition to the above steps on how to drain water from your pipes, you'll also need to prep your water filtration systems.

If you use a drinking filter, make sure to get all the water out. While you'll need to replace the filter itself when you get set back up, you can safely store your RO membrane. Just keep it in an airtight plastic bag in a cool place, and you'll be good to go. Keep in mind, if you're storing it for more than a year, you may just want to buy a new one to be safe.

What if you use a water softener? That's a simple solution as well. Just take the following precautions:

  • Disconnect the system and drain out as much water as you can with air.
  • To get out stubborn water, use a bicycle pump tube to pump out the water.
  • Whatever you do, don't turn your unit upside down. It's dangerous and can ruin the system's integrity.
  • Keep the system in a cool place to limit bacteria levels.
  • When you're ready to set the system back up, flush all of the faucets for several minutes until the water runs clear.

Certain water systems require differing winterization processes, so the best thing to do is to contact a Pentair Water Solutions water expert to find out what your system needs to winterize. You should refer to the owner’s manual or contact the equipment manufacturer for operational and maintenance requirements.

The Importance of Winter Preparedness

Winter doesn't have to be brutal as long as you prepare. One additional way to prepare is by choosing Pentair products. By providing great-tasting, odor-free water, Pentair filtration systems are just what you need to trust your supply this winter. Pentair is a full-service company offering tailored solutions for unique home water challenges. Want water tailored to your life? Insist on Pentair.
 

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