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Prevent Water Freeze-Ups
Tips for Preventing Water Freeze-Ups
Preventative maintenance before the setting chill of winter prevents a lot of frustration and expensive repairs. Taking a few minutes outside can keep aggravation to a minimum.
  • Boats and Campers: Orland Park residents with boats and campers that have seen the final days of summer should be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions for winterizing.
  • Floor Drains with P-Traps: Homes with floor drains with P-traps located in areas that are subject to freezing, like unheated garages or area ways, should add a small amount of automobile antifreeze or salt brine solution to the P-trap.
  • Frost Proof Spigots: Residents with homes without frost-proof spigots must close the interior valves in the basement or crawl space, followed by opening the spigot, allowing it to drain properly.
  • Garden Hoses: Remove the garden hose from the outside frost-proof spigot. Leaving the hose connected prevents all of the water from draining, making the spigot vulnerable to freezing and breaking.
  • Interior Water Lines: When the temperatures become extreme enough, some underground service lines, interior water lines and waste water lines can freeze. During extreme cold snaps, check to make sure pipes that are near exterior walls in crawl spaces and basements are protected from drafts.
  • Lawn Sprinkler Systems: Residents with lawn sprinkler systems that are equipped with an RPZ valve (reduced backflow pressure valve) should remove the valve before winter to prevent freezing and subsequent breakage. Once the RPZ valve is removed, drain all of the water from it and store it in a heated area. In the spring, be sure to have the RPZ valve retested once it has been reinstalled.
  • Running Water and Anti-Freeze: It may help to leave a small trickle of water running at a kitchen and/or bathroom faucet to prevent freeze-ups. Also, to protect them, you may want to add some biodegradable anti-freeze to floor drains in unheated areas.
  • Swimming Pools: Those with above-ground or in-ground swimming pools should be sure to drain down the pool heater and turn off the gas. Be sure to also drain down the pool's filter and pump.