How to stop a waterpump from freezing over winter use? New house, have some Q's. - HCS Snowmobile Forums

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Old 10-26-2007, 02:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Hey the wife and I bought a brand new house this year and we're preparing for our first winter in it. The main concern I have is of the water freezing up. We don't live in the main municipality anymore so we don't have a water delivery system like in town nor do we have sewage removal. We have a waterpump in a pumphouse pulling from the lake and a septic bed.


So my stress now is making sure that waterpump doesn't freeze solid, no water for the rest of winter=the suck. When we bought the place the PO's said the water only froze ONCE and it was over last winter. He said a combination of low to no snow load and a caved in pump house let the frost move down into the ground and froze it. He replaced the pump with a brand new one before I moved in and being a professional capenter he also built a new pump house for us including styrofoam blue insulation. The pump house is burried roughly 6 feet down into the ground. He says as long as you don't trample down the snow along the water line or the pumphouse it shouldn't ever freeze. There is no heater inside and when I mentioned putting a heater or even a lightbulb down in there with it he said that could actually draw moisture into the pumphouse and cause freezing.


So who else is running a pump house and what do you do to maintain it during -30's and -40's? I had a few ideas:

-I ordered a wifi thermometer and will install the remote sensor down with the water pump so I can see how cold it gets in the winter so I have some warning.
-I can't really just "run my tap" all winter to keep the pump moving water because I have a septic bed so all that water would just flood the system (it has to go somewhere).
-Is what he said true about putting a heater\lightbulb down there?

Any ideas are greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-26-2007, 02:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Never addressed this before, but you would be amazed what a 100w bulb in an enclosed place will do....
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Old 10-26-2007, 02:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Never addressed this before, but you would be amazed what a 100w bulb in an enclosed place will do....[/b]
Exactly, they can crank some BTU's when used properly lol, I used one as a block heater once. I think it'd work wonders, even if I just put it on a timer and it only ran for 2 or 3 hrs during the night, but I worry about what he said if it's true.
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Old 10-26-2007, 02:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Never addressed this before, but you would be amazed what a 100w bulb in an enclosed place will do....[/b]
Till it burns out. Ha.
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Hey the wife and I bought a brand new house this year and we're preparing for our first winter in it. The main concern I have is of the water freezing up. We don't live in the main municipality anymore so we don't have a water delivery system like in town nor do we have sewage removal. We have a waterpump in a pumphouse pulling from the lake and a septic bed.
So my stress now is making sure that waterpump doesn't freeze solid, no water for the rest of winter=the suck. When we bought the place the PO's said the water only froze ONCE and it was over last winter. He said a combination of low to no snow load and a caved in pump house let the frost move down into the ground and froze it. He replaced the pump with a brand new one before I moved in and being a professional capenter he also built a new pump house for us including styrofoam blue insulation. The pump house is burried roughly 6 feet down into the ground. He says as long as you don't trample down the snow along the water line or the pumphouse it shouldn't ever freeze. There is no heater inside and when I mentioned putting a heater or even a lightbulb down in there with it he said that could actually draw moisture into the pumphouse and cause freezing.
So who else is running a pump house and what do you do to maintain it during -30's and -40's? I had a few ideas:

-I ordered a wifi thermometer and will install the remote sensor down with the water pump so I can see how cold it gets in the winter so I have some warning.
-I can't really just "run my tap" all winter to keep the pump moving water because I have a septic bed so all that water would just flood the system (it has to go somewhere).
-Is what he said true about putting a heater\lightbulb down there?

Any ideas are greatly appreciated.[/b]
I'd be very concerned with the leach bed freezing from un-use, DO NOT drive over it with sleds or anything in the Winter, if possible, plow snow over it, mine froze twice, not fun.

Don
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I would run an 80/100 watt light 24/7 when the temps hit 20 or below! That will only protect the pipes in the well house not the offset between the pit and the water source! You said the water source was a Lake??
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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wrap pink insulation around it and duct tape it shut, just the heat from the motor running will keep it very warm and it wont cost you any electricity.

edit: leave jsut enuf of a hole in the insulation where the end of the motor is so it can get some cooling air, you dont want it too hot.
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Exactly, they can crank some BTU's when used properly lol, I used one as a block heater once. I think it'd work wonders, even if I just put it on a timer and it only ran for 2 or 3 hrs during the night, but I worry about what he said if it's true.[/b]
Father in law lives in a trailer, and the water pump is underneath. Just keeps a droplight on it and it doesn't freeze up.
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'd be very concerned with the leach bed freezing from un-use, DO NOT drive over it with sleds or anything in the Winter, if possible, plow snow over it, mine froze twice, not fun.

Don[/b]
Don't worry I plan on putting up a temp-fence with reflectors to keep my "friends" from ripping over the bed on their sleds, first one who does it gets to defrost it himself lol. We live here all year round so the bed will be seing use including hot water laundry washes, etc, so hopefully it won't freeze up.



Quote:
I would run an 80/100 watt light 24/7 when the temps hit 20 or below! That will only protect the pipes in the well house not the offset between the pit and the water source! You said the water source was a Lake??[/b]
So the light shouldn't draw in moisture and cause freezing on it's own? The offset won't be protected, but i plan on staking it off so no one walks\sleds over my lines. The pump house is approx 15 feet from the lake then the house is about 100 feet (including slope) to the house. So I think as long as we keep using the water and the water keeps flowing through the pipes it shouldn't freeze, just like municipality water.

Yes the pump is pulling from the lake. It's a small lake that is spring fed, the water pickup is right at the spring vent in the bottom of the lake itself.


Maybe I'll snap a pic or two and post up so you guys can let me know if it looks good. The guy who previously owned the house was very honest and I know wouldn't screw me around on purpose, but that doesn't mean he knows everything about everything so I thought I'd fish some ideas from everyone. I'll post some pics up in a min I'll grab the camera and head to the beach.
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Old 10-26-2007, 03:09 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Just Before the snow hits, if its above ground put spruce bows on it so when the snow covers it it will be insulated, or burry it below the frost line,
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