Understanding Construction Costs

What Does It Mean To Blow Out Your Sprinkler System?

If you own a home or a property with an automatic sprinkler system, you may have heard that you're supposed to get your pipes blown out in the winter. Knowing what to do and why it needs to be done can help you take care of your property and ensure that your sprinkler system will still be functional when the weather warms up in the spring.

What does it mean to blow out your sprinkler system?

Blowing out your sprinklers is the process of removing all water from the pipes in your underground sprinkler system. Usually this is done in the winter when the temperatures outside are expected to drop below freezing.

Why is blowing out your sprinkler system important?

Removing the water from your sprinkler system is important because freezing water trapped in your pipes can expand and cause the pipes to burst, just as the pipes in your home can burst if the temperature outside gets too cold.

Can you blow out your own sprinkler system's pipes?

If you know what you're doing and you have an air compressor, you should be able to blow out the pipes in your sprinkler system. However, many people prefer to hire a professional to ensure that the job is done right.

If you wish to blow out your own sprinkler, what should you do?

If you wish to blow out your own sprinkler system, you can start by turning off the water supply to the sprinkler system and connecting your air compressor to the blow-out valve. Next, open one zone of the sprinkler system, and turn on your air compressor. If your system's pipes are rigid PVC pipe, turn on the air compressor to 80 psi. If your system's pipes are flexible polyethylene, turn on your air compressor to 50 psi.

As soon as the air compressor turns on, it will start to push out the water from the underground pipes. The sprinkler heads will push up and turn on. When the pipes are empty, the sprinklers will stop spraying water. Turn off the compressor, open the next zone in the sprinkler system and repeat the process. Don't leave the compressor running for extra time, because this can cause the gears in the system to overheat.

For more information about how you can blow out your home's automatic sprinkler system, talk to your landscaper or sprinkler repair person. He or she can give you tips or can perform the blow out for you.