Winters in the Southwest are beautiful—but they can also be harsh. Unfortunately, cold weather can adversely affect your water well, leaving you without access to water and creating the need for costly repairs. Luckily, you can follow the tips below to properly winterize your well.
How to Winterize Your Water Well
1. Protect Pipes
Most wells are located below the frost line in the soil, which means their water is unlikely to freeze. However, the pipes aren’t as well protected. If they aren’t below the frost line, wrap them with foam insulation sleeves or old blankets. Then, use heat tape to secure them around the pipes.
If you are currently dealing with frozen pipes, use a hair dryer to warm the frozen section first, then wipe it dry and apply the insulating material. For solidly frozen pipes or pipes that have broken, you need to get a professional well service to help you repair the system before it can be winterized.
2. Insulate the Pump
There are two main types of well pumps. A deep pump goes inside a well. It needs to be periodically cleared of sand and silt, but it’s far enough below the frost line that it won’t freeze.
Meanwhile, a jet pump is usually located in a basement or separate building. Wrap them in foam insulation if you live in an area where temperatures dip below freezing.
3. Winterize Seasonal Dwellings
If you have a summer cabin or seasonal dwelling, you need to take steps to protect the system. First, turn off the water supply and the well pump breaker. Then, drain water from the pipes by running the faucets.
To ensure that the pump cannot accidentally turn on, disconnect the wiring that feeds it electricity. For an above-ground jet pump, loosen the hose clamps on the water feed lines so the hoses can drain into a bucket.
If you need help winterizing a water well in the Williamsburg, NM, area, call Mauldin Drilling LLC. They have 45 years of experience with all aspects of well maintenance, diagnostics and repair, and drilling. They also carry a variety of parts and pumps, including solar-powered options, if you need replacements. Call (575) 894-3192 for assistance or go to the website to see a full list of services.