Simple Steps for Rainwater System Winterization

Snowy_street_in_downtown_SeattleWith the cold weather upon us, many rainwater systems need to be winterized.

Most whole house use rainwater collection systems are frost protected when installed, due to their use in the winter months. But, if your rainwater system is used for irrigation only, or if you have a simple rain barrel system, winterization is an important maintenance task that should be addressed before the cold weather hits. Broken pipes can lead to draining your cistern empty, or possible damage your pressure pump. Costly repairs or replacement of components can be avoided with little planning.

Be sure your pipes are not exposed to the weather by insulating, or draining. If draining, be sure to leave the valves open afterward. You can temporarily cover pipes with straw or hay if necessary.

Drain the pump of all water – including what is in the expansion tank, leaving this valve open, too.

Be sure to inspect your first flush device “dribbler valve” to be sure it is clear of obstructions so it will operate correctly.

Inspect systems to be sure there are no leaks from cisterns and that your gutter system is clean and ready to collect rain for spring and summer use.

Simple steps can be taken to insure your rainwater collection system will be operational for the next season and that you are collecting water during the winter months.

Snowy Street Downtown Seattle courtesy of Ekaune

Ken Blair
A rainwater collection systems designer and consultant, Ken has designed and installed residential and commercial systems, primarily in the northwest United States for more than 10 years and, in 2014, began consulting and managing builds in other states. Ken is an accredited ARCSA Professional Designer / Installer and Life Member, the Northwest Regional ARCSA representative and advisor to its education committee and is available to speak about Rainwater Collection Systems design and builds.

Ken is a United States Navy veteran, having served on active duty during the Vietnam War era.

A career entrepreneur, Ken created a new business focus with a commercial dive company in Hawaii in the mid 1980′s to respond to and clean up oil spills, oil spill equipment training, service and maintenance for the oil co-op service industry. Ken is passionate about having a positive impact on the environment and is also a founding director of BANK-ON-RAIN (2011-2014), whose mission is to create grassroots solutions for rainwater collection for consumption and agriculture in developing areas of the planet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *