How Cold Is Too Cold for Sprinklers?

A sprinkler system with the words, how cold is too cold for sprinklers?

Now that the weather is finally starting to warm up, you might be wondering when it’s time to start cultivating your lawn again. While you may be eager to get your lawn back to its pristine green state, it is important to remember that temperatures at and below 32 degrees Fahrenheit put your sprinkler system at risk of freezing. That can cause cracking in exposed pipes or a build-up of pressure in the head of the sprinkler which can lead to a lot of issues you don’t want to deal with. Here are the three most important steps you can take to protect your sprinkler system from Mother Nature’s random freezes.

Step 1: Shut Off the Water Supply 

To protect your sprinkler system from the random chills that sometimes fall as winter transitions into spring, it’s important to shut off the water supply to the irrigation system by engaging the shut-off valve to the sprinkler system’s irrigation system. This valve is generally located near the main water meter. It will be recognizable by its orange and spring green tag.

How Long Does Northern Texas Traditionally Experience Cold Weather?

The DFW metroplex generally has its cool season from November through February. Daily temperatures during this time can average anywhere from a high of 64℉ to a low of 39℉. However, while these are the averages, it is important to note that temperatures can still dip below this depending on current weather patterns and conditions. Always check with your local weather channel for an update on the current weather and future weather conditions for your area. 

Step 2: Unplug the Booster Pump

If you have a booster pump, you will need to unplug it, too. The booster pump will be located on the ground and will be recognizable by the cord going to an outlet box. Simply unplug it from the wall outlet or from the box.

Step 3: Run the System

Lastly, you will want to relieve pressure by running the system. To do this, turn on any zone from the sprinkler controller/timer for two minutes. Even if no water comes out of the irrigation system, the pressure in the mainline will still be released which will protect it from developing tears or bursting if it should happen to freeze. Once you have completed this step, unplug the controller and the timer.

What Happens If My Sprinkler System Freezes?

When water freezes, it expands; this puts an incredible amount of pressure on the elements of your sprinkler system. It can lead to cracked sprinkler heads, cracked pipes, or leaks. This increases the danger around your property as leaking water can lead to pooling water and the formation of ice on walkways. Always recruit the aid of a professional sprinkler maintenance and repair technician for help with a frozen sprinkler system to avoid additional damage.

Call the Sprinkler Lady

If you find that your sprinkler system isn’t working properly or requires regular maintenance, it is time to call The Sprinkler Lady. HEB Plumbing & Sprinkler Kathlyn Smith has been providing quality service to Tarrant County since 1972. HEB Plumbing & Sprinkler can expertly perform any necessary sprinkler system repairs and will ensure your system is operating efficiently. Give us a call today!

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