As we approach colder months, one question that we commonly receive is, Do I need to winterize my sprinkler system in North Texas?
While Texas generally has milder winters, we can get some cold days, so some irrigation changes might make sense. But it’s still not the same to winterize an irrigation system in North Texas as it is in other parts of the country that have consistently below-freezing temperatures.
In this article, we’ll talk about whether to winterize a sprinkler system in North Texas and what that really means.
In the Northeastern part of the country as well as other areas that get frequent below-freezing temperatures, winterizing an irrigation system means blowing out the lines as to not leave behind any drops of water (which can cause freezing and breakage). Then, the system is completely shut down.
But there is still some growth that occurs in North Texas and we often recommend year-round watering.
For us, to winterize an irrigation system in North Texas just means making some changes.
This includes resetting the controller for winter watering.
While some homeowners might say, I’ll just turn it off in the winter, the truth is, some plants will still need winter water around your property.
If we have a particularly dry winter with some cold fronts passing through, that’s even more reason to ensure that the property is still receiving some water. It certainly won’t need as much as it does during the hot and dry months of summer—but many properties do have winter flowers that will still be in bloom during this time.
In addition, if you have a lawn made up of either winter rye or fescue, those grass types still need some water during the winter months. Other grass types will likely go dormant and might not require irrigation.
In addition to adjusting the watering schedule, when your irrigation professional comes out to winterize an irrigation system, they should also be performing a general fall inspection and just checking up on your system. During this check-up, your irrigation professional should make sure that your rain and freeze sensors are still working optimally.
These components of an irrigation system have a relatively short lifespan (usually only 1 or 2 years), as they are out in the elements and constantly exposed to harsh conditions. But it’s so important that these sensors are properly functioning.
If your irrigation system turns on at a time when we’re experiencing freezing temperatures and the sidewalk gets wet, it could turn to ice. That is actually illegal in some cities. A freeze sensor can prevent this from happening.
At Grassperson, one step that we’re taking beyond re-setting the controller and checking the rain and freeze sensors is that we’re also looking at whether you have a system that is entirely underground or one that has above-ground components.
Historically, systems were always wholly underground. But now, many have press vacuum breakers (PVB) that are above ground with a water meter from the city. With this system, there is water coming up to the valve at all times, even if your water is turned off. Because it’s above the ground, it is more exposed to temperature conditions.
We have seen some of these freeze and cause problems for homeowners. So, now, it is part of our fall check-up to see what you have. If it’s a PVB system, we’re making sure it’s properly insulated—and if it’s not, we’re bringing in some material to insulate it and prevent problems.
Ultimately, it boils down to giving you peace of mind that your irrigation system is ready to get through the winter months and be ready to go come next spring and summer when it’s truly needed the most!
Although it looks different to winterize an irrigation system in North Texas than in other parts of the country, it’s important that your irrigation professional is staying on top of your system’s needs, no matter what the season.
At Grassperson, we know that water is such an essential part of a thriving North Texas landscape and we take irrigation quite seriously. For many of our homeowners, it’s a matter of having peace of mind and letting go of the worries.
After all, we understand that you don’t have time to be worrying about the nuances associated with your irrigation system or what needs to be done with it at what time of the year. Instead, you just want to know that you have a partner you can count on to take care of your property’s needs all year round.
Our focus is on taking care of your total property, including irrigation, so that you can truly let go of all of those worries and just get back to enjoying your property.
Stop worrying about your irrigation system and leave it up to a pro who knows exactly what your Northern Texas property needs. Get a free quote, then you can enjoy the best lawn on the block!