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Old 05-03-2011, 10:42 AM   #1
IslandRadio
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Default When is it safe to turn on the water?

Hi !

We're on Rattlesnake, and put the docks back in the water on May 1. But, I was and am very hesitant to hook up the water pump and turn on the water, etc. for fear of freezing, etc.

Last year was very much warmer than this year, and I did hook up the water in early May.

The cottage is unheated and all of the piping underneath is exposed.

Any ideas, suggestions, rules-of-thumb, etc?

Thanks and Regards,

Steve
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:01 AM   #2
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It is safe now based on 30+ years of experience at Welch. There may still be nights down to 25 or less but it won't be long enough to hard freeze water in the pipes. Also the lake is warming and helps keep night temps higher than on the mainland. Our water is in.
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:55 AM   #3
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Default When is it safe to turn on the water?

GO FOR IT.
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Old 05-03-2011, 12:36 PM   #4
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Go for it. Ours was turned on on the day of ice-out as it always is. You certainly wont have any issues
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Old 05-03-2011, 01:42 PM   #5
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Default Good to go

I agree with the other posts, we have past the freezing point.
Last season our water was hooked up from March 25 - November 27 never had an issue with freezing.
This year was April 21st
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:13 PM   #6
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We have the same setup, with pipes exposed under the house.

We've been opening up on Patriots Day weekend (mid-April) for the past 15 years. No problems yet.

There have been some nights when I worried, seemingly unnecessarily. As Slickcraft pointed out, it's usually only cold for a few hours in the wee hours of the morning, not nearly long enough for the hard freezes that cause damage.
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:48 PM   #7
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Agree.
We have been leaving water in the pipes from Ice out till end of November each year. (8) My camp is exposed underneath and pipe lays on the ground to the lake. I get more nervous on the fall end than the spring end but have never had a problem.

A few times I have had the water in the black poly lines "get stiff". Never enough to cause any damage. Just wait a while for the lines to thaw.

One practice we are religious about is turning off the breaker to the Pump and the Hot water heater. If something does break, I would not want to flood the camp or burn out the heater.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:34 PM   #8
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Hi Steve,

We start installing our client's water systems immediately following ice-out. You should be safe anytime after ice-out for the reasons other forum members have already mentioned. Rattlesnake Guy's suggestion about shutting off the breaker is a great idea for peace of mind both early and late in the season.

Good luck,
Mike
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Old 05-03-2011, 08:34 PM   #9
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Default Let it drip

Turn it on. Then if you're worried, let it drip a little on the cold nights. Should be more than enough for the few hours of freezing temperatures that might occur.
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Old 05-04-2011, 08:39 AM   #10
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Go for it....it'll never freeze after about April 12...and even if it does it's pretty easy to repair a cracked copper 1/2' pipe with some soldier and a new fitting or something. Any leaky water just ends up in the dirt crawl space with no damages.

Probably you want to pull the electric plug for the pump when leaving as standard procedure.
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Old 05-04-2011, 11:24 PM   #11
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Thanks very much for all of the replies. So, I guess I'm safe after 1-May, which is generally when West Alton Marina opens, and we can actually get to the Island. Of course, it depends a little on the year, etc.

I'll be hooking things up this weekend, weather permitting !

Thanks and Regards,

Steve
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