October is here and you know what that means right? It’s time to blow out your underground sprinklers. Of course, you could always hire a professional to do this for you, but we thought we would share some tips just in case you wanted to give it a shot yourself.
1. Turn the water off. It depends on how your system is built but you should be able to do this by shutting off the master valve you find in the basement, utility room and in your garage.
2. For this step, you will most likely get wet. You’ll have to manually drain the water from the system. To do this you have to reduce the pressure flowing through the pipes by opening the hose bib. Make sure you have a large bucket handy to catch the water that is going to spurt out due to the pressure.
3. Rent or buy an air compressor from an equipment rental company. We recommend Wards Rentals here in Lethbridge if you don’t know of any off the top of your head. Charge the compressor but don’t charge it up to 120 pounds per square inch as that is too much pressure and can damage your system. The most recommended charge is 60 pounds per square inch.
4. Next, connect the compressor to the hose bib once you confirm that the compressor is OFF first. Sometimes the fittings don’t match so you may have to figure out a way to make a secure seal between the hose and compressor, but it will still work.
5. Starting from the furthest zone from you, working your way to the nearest, turn on the compressor to empty the hoses. You should keep the sprinkler on for at least 2 minutes in each zone. Once the water turns from mist to air that is when you know to move onto the next zone.
Blowing out your sprinkler system is a must as it prevents future headaches and saves you a lot of money as repairs are costly. If your sprinkler system does not get blown out you risk cracked pipes, ruined seals and broken valves due to water left pooled in the pipes. This water left behind has potential to destroy any plastic or metal as it expands in freezing temperatures.