One of the most prevalent causes of sprinkler system damage is freezing weather. Frozen water expands, putting significant strain on pipes, manifolds, and sprinkler heads. This pressure might seriously harm your irrigation system. If you live in a cold climate, it's important to check your pipes for signs of freezing. The best defense against freezing is to make sure that your sprinklers are at least 15 inches away from vegetation that could grow into high-reaching trees or poles. You should also contact your local utility company to see if they can send out someone to inspect your system for free.
If you think your system has frozen, first use heat to thaw it out. Use a blowtorch to avoid heating up surrounding property. Then, call a professional sprinkler repair service as soon as possible. They will be able to determine what needs to be done with your system and how much it will cost.
If you fail to winterize your sprinklers, water will freeze in the irrigation valves, pipelines, and sprinkler heads. Water expands as it freezes, causing components of your system to explode and ruining your sprinkler system.
The best way to prevent damage from frozen sprinklers is to prevent ice from forming in the first place. This can be done by clearing away any fallen branches or other debris that may block water flow and keeping an eye on systems during cold weather episodes. If you see any evidence that your sprinklers have been activated by freezing temperatures, have them repaired before another freeze-thaw cycle occurs.
Winterizing your sprinkler system involves closing off access points to underground pipes and turning off the supply of water to areas not under cover. This prevents water in these areas from freezing and causing damage when the temperature drops at night.
During a winter storm, traffic signals may be damaged by heavy snow and ice, so use caution while driving through snowfall events. If possible, avoid travel where possible and provide safe passage for those who must go out into hazardous conditions.
Check on neighbors too; some people may not have access to home repairs equipment and might need help with their sprinkler systems. A little time and effort can go a long way when it comes to preventing flooding and other damage caused by frozen sprinklers.
When temperatures go below freezing, the water in the sprinkler system begins to freeze and turn to ice. When water freezes, it expands and bursts the sprinkler pipe, resulting in a freeze break. The water will also expand when it reaches its maximum temperature, which can also cause damage to sprinkler pipes. Have your sprinklers inspected by a licensed plumbing professional at least once per year.
Freezing rain and hail can also cause serious damage to your property. If you experience any signs of flooding or other problems with your plumbing system, call 911 immediately. Waiting for help will not improve the situation; it could even make it worse if you have gas lines or electrical boxes near the flooding zone. Don't try to fix any damaged parts of your plumbing system yourself. Any mistake you make could cause more damage than what you are able to repair.
If you live in an area that experiences high levels of humidity, there is a chance that your sprinkler systems won't be able to drain all of the water from their circuits. This problem will most likely occur during heavy rainfall or when the climate control system tries to cool off the house using air conditioners or heat pumps. To prevent this from happening, make sure that the drainage holes on the bottom of your sprinkler heads are unobstructed.
When water freezes inside a sprinkler pipe, it forms a blockage that can render the sprinkler system ineffective in the case of a fire. As the ice expands, the internal water pressure in the pipe rises, causing the pipe to break. This is why it is important not to freeze your sprinkler system. The best way to prevent this from happening is to have your system inspected by a licensed irrigation professional at least once per year, and more often if you live in an area that experiences cold temperatures.
If you wait until spring to service your system will be too late; pipes will have already frozen over. Instead, start the process early enough so that all parts of the system are taken care of before freezing temperatures arrive.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that you drain and dry all components of your system before turning off the power. Disconnect all valves from the supply line and then remove all caps from outdoor faucets. This will help ensure that any moisture in the lines will be removed before it has time to freeze.
After draining all components, cover or shield any exposed metal such as downspouts, hoses, and pipes with insulation. If possible, keep exterior walls of buildings where sprinklers are located warm in order to prevent ice from forming there also.