How to Prevent Your Water Well from Freezing

Having your water well freeze up can be disastrous and costly, so precautions should be taken in advance of winter to prevent your water from freezing. Tyler Sutliff, Presdient of a Texas based water well drilling company adds, “water well freezing can lead to broken pipes, cracked well casing, and even a destroyed pump.” Trying to thaw frozen pipes in freezing weather is not only inconvenient, it could be downright dangerous. Preparing your well in advance for freezing weather will keep it operating smoothly throughout the winter. 

Using heat tape

Any pipes above ground has the biggest chance of freezing. Wrapping these with heat tape can keep the water flowing. The tape needs to be ran from the well all the way into the house. Never overlap the tape or it could not work right and even could catch fire. Read the manufacturers instructions and follow them accordingly.

Pipe insulation

Using pipe insulation can keep the water flowing as long as the temperatures do not reach well below freezing. This can be anything from old clothing to store-bought foam insulation. These are made with a slit in one side to make installation easy. Old clothing can be double wrapped around the pipes and held on with weather-proof tape.

A well cover

Covering the well with a double insulated cover can help keep the water from freezing. This can be purchased from a plumbing supply house or you could make your own. Using two plastic trash cans with one a little larger will make a great well cover. Insulate between the two cans and install over the well opening. Weight the cans down so the wind can not blow it away. Keep the insulation dry or else it will become worthless.

Dripping water

Leaving faucets dripping in the house will help keep the system from freezing. The pump will cycle on and off which will keep it from locking up, which could be a very expensive repair. If the temperature falls below zero, you open the faucets to a slight steady stream.

Build a housing structure

Building a small house will keep your well from freezing up. This can be insulated with a rigid foam board insulation which is waterproof. A heat lamp can keep it warm enough for the water to keep flowing. A tiny window can be installed to monitor the light to make sure it stays on. This should be installed so it can be seen from the living area of your house. During deep freezing weather this should be monitored several times during the night since this is when the coldest temperatures arrive.

Keep up to date

Before the cold season sets in, have your well inspected. If the pump and piping system is old, consider having them replaced while the weather is still good. A properly installed well system will be less likely to freeze than an older out of date well. This could save many headaches and expense if everything has to be replaced in freezing weather. Finding someone to even work on the well could be impossible during the winter months. Being prepared for sub-zero temperatures will keep your well working trouble free for many years to come. For more technical information on water wells, check out this article.

About the author:
Tyler Sutliff is the President of WLWSI, a Texas based water drilling company. For more information about water wells and pumps, check out their Facebook page.


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