What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Ultimate in Winterizing Water Pipes

Sometimes winterizing involves closing up a house or cottage for the winter months and this is typically the time for doing that winterizing. When it comes to dealing with winterizing there really are two options available. The first is to leave some type of heat source on or use a pipe heater and hope there is no power failure. This option has the downside of costing money while the house or cottage is not being used as well as the possibility of frozen pipes that could lead to considerable damage if they burst. We had our pipes freeze at one our previous houses and I will tell you that definitely was not a lot of fun. The second option is to shut off the water and blow out the lines with pressurized air. The former owner of this house chose to put in a multi-shutoff water system so the house could be shut down for the winter months.

multi-shutoff water systemMulti-Shutoff Water System

Pictured is our multi-shutoff system. The green arrow is the in house water meter. When we moved in there was an outdoor sensor for reading it but they have since changed that out for an indoor sensor that they can read from the main road! This system looks a bit more complicated than it is. Basically each faucet in the house has both a hot and cold water shutoff as does the washer. Each toilet has a shutoff as does the outside water taps. Some are knows while others are levers. The top main with the red knobs is hot while the bottom with blue knobs is cold. Some of the knobs are hooked to nothing so the system can be expanded.

We are not currently using the multi-shutoff system for winterizing purposes. A huge benefit to this type of system is when we are working on anything water related we can simply turn the water off to that faucet using the centralized system. There's no need to turn off the supply to the entire house something that many do not appreciate until they have done plumbing in your home or had a plumbing problem. Basically the water is shut off to only the pipes you are working one with this system. The downside of this system and this is specific to this house is the hot water has to travel about 70 feet to get to the kitchen. Our work around for this is we are planning to install an under the counter electric tankless water heater in the kitchen to service the sink and dishwasher. This will eliminate the long run decreasing energy wastage. The water heater tank that services the rest of the house will be changed out for a natural gas tankless water heater. The tankless water heaters will end up be eco-friendly while letting us enjoy a bit more energy efficiency.

Garden Gnome