10 Steps to Winterizing Your Underground Sprinkler System

Late fall is the time of yr to put together your lawn and sprinkler or irrigation gadget for the coming iciness months. To avoid the damaging results of frozen pipes and sprinkler heads, you can both prepare your sprinkler device your self or hire a expert to winterize your device for you.

The extent that your machine calls for winterizing depends on what part of the u . S . A . You live in. In warm areas, it could suggest adjusting the timer or turning it to the off function. In cooler components of the usa, you could want to insulate your valves and whatever above floor. In very cold climates, you need to do more. If you live in a climate that freezes, you need to show off and drain your machine or turn off and blow air through the valves and pipes. houston sprinkler repair

Before you begin to work in your sprinkler system, however, there are some garden protection problems to cope with. Because leaves smother your grass, rake up excess leaves. Late inside the fall is a superb time to fertilize your garden, commonly about a month before it typically freezes. Your garden has been developing all summer and the dirt may be missing vitamins it wishes to green up when spring rolls round.

Finally, in most climates you’ll want to cut your grass quick for the wintry weather to give plenty of room for brand new grass increase inside the spring. In decrease, hotter elevations, cross in advance and go away your grass longer as this could higher keep moisture over the iciness. Next, it is time to speak about your irrigation or sprinkler machine.

The following 10 steps cope with structures in a cold quarter vulnerable to freezing:

Locate the primary water supply to the irrigation system.

Turn the water supply off to your sprinkler machine before the primary frost by using finding the close-off valve that controls water flowing in your system. This valve is commonly in an underground field beneath the frost line or in a heated location. In Salt Lake City, for example, the frost line is 32″ so the valve might be under that degree. A unique device, called a forestall and waste key or shrink key, is needed. The keys are to be had at your neighborhood hardware keep. Most valves are closed with the aid of turning the valve one-area of a flip to the right.

Open all drains, such as you backflow preventer assembly, and leave them open for some hours to allow all water to get away.

Remove your sprinkler heads so the water will drain from them and now not freeze for the duration of the winter.

Clean out any remaining water with an air compressor, charging it to 60 pounds per square inch (psi). Start by using putting the air hose into the nozzle of the drain valve located nearest the main water close off and pressure out excess water with a short blast of air. Begin next with the quarter furthest from the manage. Activate one zone of your machine at a time and go away it open as you rotate around blasting each with air, and closing it off before shifting to a distinct area.

Replace all the sprinkler heads and near the backflow preventer valve. One notice of caution right here: steel pipes can tolerate as much as 80 psi however flexible hosing calls for a good deal less strain. Higher psi’s can absolutely damage flexible hosing. You can even need to avoid blowing the air through the lower back drift as hot air can harm it. Your irrigation preservation professional will recognize how tons air stress is proper to your device.

In excessively bloodless climates, you could need to feature a blanket of fiberglass, or as a minimum an vintage blanket or towels blanketed by using plastic over the valves and piping in you sprinkler manipulate box.

Turn off the power to timers and eliminate batteries after you have got blown out the water from each quarter and unplug strength cords or turn off the energy source thru your breaker panel.

Cover and observe foam insulation to above ground pipes.

Now is also an excellent time to shop your garden mower and other gardening gear for the winter.
Sprinkler or irrigation systems in hotter climates that not often or in no way freeze do no longer need this degree of upkeep. Many systems have a “rain” or “off” mode that basically shuts off water to the valves and keeps all the programming information. If you are susceptible to freezing even a few times, you want to empty your main valve and you could need to cover your water supply gadget positioned underground to save you any final water from expanding and breaking pipes. In warm climates, you may also close down power to the controller however this means you may need to reprogram you device early next spring. It is also a good concept to cowl and insulate above ground pipes.

The satisfactory advice you can get on what your particular sprinkler or irrigation machine needs is from your sprinkler maintenance professional. Once your system is prepared for the winter, you could loosen up and settle in for winter!

Jillynn Stevens, Ph.D. Is a writer with a significant array of challenge depend know-how. Along with publishing articles for massive and small groups, she researches, writes and publishes reports on numerous public coverage troubles.