In the Houston, Texas area we have to worry only about exposed irrigation system piping and components. The underground piping is usually not affected by our kind of freezing weather because the soil acts as an insulator. The temperature of the soil your irrigation system is buried in typically stays above freezing. It is however VERY important to protect exposed pipes and sprinkler system components from freeze. System protection can be achieved by insulating a sprinkler system, draining a sprinkler system, checking o-rings and seals, electrical and more.
Houston weather has taken a chilly turn over the last week or so. Our usual warm and humid environment disappeared and temperatures fell into the 20’s as the weathermen across the country spoke of “polar vortexes” and ice storms throughout the nation.
When a strong freeze hits Houston we are always faced with damage to our pipes and sprinkler systems. As that ice thaws out, you’ve got a real mess on your hands.
JB Irrigation specializes in sprinkler freeze repair and our team of well trained technicians are available to fix your sprinkler issues quickly – anywhere in the Houston area.
For more information on on sprinkler winterization and freeze repair, call Justin at (281) 760-3882.
Sometimes it takes getting soaked with water-bill sticker shock for homeowners to find out about a leaking sprinkler system.
A leak the width of a dime in an underground sprinkler line can waste 6,300 gallons of water per month — doubling typical water use on some household water bills.
Aside from increased water bills, underground leaks from sprinkler systems may not surface until a sinkhole swallows a backyard deck or water bubbles up as an unintended bedroom fountain. Underground leaks from sprinkler systems, threaten pocketbooks and water supplies alike, particularly during dry seasons.
How much water can be lost to seemingly small leaks?
A leak near one sprinkler head can lose about 225 gallons during one 15-minute watering cycle. Run three times per week, that can waste about 3,000 gallons of water per month. The magnitude gets multiplied when it’s a community irrigation system or commercial-size system at a neighborhood, business, condominium or hotel.
How much can leaks increase water bills?
The water lost in that small leak near one sprinkler head can end up tacking an additional $20 per month onto water bills.
Larger leaks from irrigation systems can double a water bill in one month. Even when a leak is to blame for an inflated water bill, it’s the homeowner, in most cases, who still gets stuck paying.
To try to promote conservation, many city utilities (including City of Houston) charge higher rates for the largest water users, so one month of leaking can push a customer into that more expensive category.
What damage can leaks cause?
Leaks from sprinkler lines can create sink holes and below-ground cavities that crack or cave in pool decks, sidewalks and patios and also damage utility lines. Portions of lawns and other landscaping can be lost due to declining water pressure from a leaking sprinkler system that runs unattended.
How can you detect underground leaks?
Utility and water-management district officials recommend periodic leak testing of sprinkler systems. Leaks in sprinkler systems fed by wells don’t show up in water bills that charge for water supplied by local utilities. Checking for irrigation leaks includes looking for broken sprinkler heads and testing each sprinkling zone for reduced water pressure, which can be sign of below-ground leaks.
How do sprinkler leaks affect our drinking-water supply?
Landscape irrigation alone accounts for about half the public water supply used in most areas, according to management districts.
Pumping more water to feed leaking sprinkler lines and adds to the strain on underground drinking-water supplies.
Checking for leaks in irrigation systems and pools should become everyone’s conservation routine.
Written by: Andy Reid
Halloween is right around the corner and before we know it we’ll be deep into the winter season.
The Houston areas has had several hard freezes over the last few winters, so it’s very important to plan for a sprinkler winterization service before that happens again.
JB Irrigation provides a thorough sprinkler maintenance and winterization service that will inspect every component of your irrigation system and ensure that it is ready to survive the off season without falling victim to sprinkler freeze damage or other expensive problems.
The following video presented by Rain Bird explains some of the other steps needed to prepare your yard and sprinkler system for the winter.
According to State Farm Insurance, about a quarter-million American homes suffer the consequences of a burst pipe every year. It’s as if we all are acutely aware of the risks, but we just get distracted by other things or focused on other holiday-time costs and neglect one of the most important elements of our homes. Pipe insulation is an affordable way to keep your pipes warmer, reducing your risk of a costly burst pipe.
Here are the top reasons you should invest in pipe insulation before Winter:
Save money on water heating.
You remind your kids to turn off the faucet when it’s not in use. You wash your laundry on a cold water setting as often as you can. You time yourself in the shower to ensure you’re not throwing money down the drain. Water heating is expensive, we know. Pipe insulation is a great way to combat the expense of hot water heating by keeping your pipes warmer all the time. Just imagine what even a few degrees could mean to your energy bills.
No more waiting for the water to heat up.
Don’t you just hate standing outside your shower on a cold Winter morning waiting for the water to go from frigidly cold to warm and toasty? Or running your kitchen sink for a couple minutes until the hot water kicks in so you can wash your dishes? Not only does pipe insulation save you heating the water; it also saves you the amount of water you use period. Install some pipe insulation, and you’re on your way into the shower much sooner!
Avoid costly repairs from burst pipes.
Depending on the extent of the damage, a burst pipe can cost you as little as a few hundred or as much as several thousand dollars. Remember: pipe bursts can mean more than just pipe replacement. They can mean repairs to your foundation, insulation, paneling and other woodwork, and even flooring. Pipe insulation can be particularly helpful if you spend any time at all away from your home in the Winter.
It’s useful in Summertime, too!
While there is no doubt that your pipes are safe from freezing during our sweltering Houston Summers, pipe insulation can help prevent your cold water pipes from “sweating” in the heat. This condensation that can cover cold water pipes in the Summer can lead to mold growth, another costly and dangerous problem for homeowners.
Need some help getting your pipes insulated before the temperatures start dropping? Give us a call today.
JB Irrigation and Services want to wish you and your family a happy holiday season.
The holidays are a wonderful time to spend with your loved ones, without having to worry about things like your irrigation system. The winter brings unexpected freezes that can cause serious damage to your sprinkler system at any moment, so why not let our experience sprinkler technicians perform a winterization service on your irrigation system before your family visits for the holiday.
Peace of mind knowing that your irrigation system is safe will make the season more enjoyable for everyone.
Contact us at 281.744.6909, or send us an email and we’ll schedule a winterization service today.
Attention Scheduled Maintenance customers…we will be contacting those customers newly signed up for Summer System Check #2 by phone. Or you may call us at 281-744-6909, to set up your appointment at your convienience.
It has been a cold winter this year and Houston has recently seen multiple freezes that could cause severe damage to your sprinkler system.
If you have already experienced sprinkler damage due to the freeze, call us at 281-744-6909 and we’ll send a trained sprinkler repair professional out to fix your problem and prepare your sprinkler system so that it can handle the next freeze with ease.
Of course, you shouldn’t wait for a freeze to call us. We provide freeze protection services that could save you a lot of money on unnecessary repairs.
In June the City of Houston raised their water rates. Other area water providers are following suit. Houston’s rate jumps as much as 30%. We can show you how to save money (and water) with your existing system.