How to prepare your well and borehole for the Winter

by | Oct 25, 2021

Winter is coming. Well, it is in a couple of months. However, the Christmas adverts are already hitting our screens. The unreasonably joyous music is starting to play in every shop on the high street. Halloween hasn’t even happened at the time of writing this, but… It’s starting to look a lot like Christmas. As we mentioned in our previous blog post about a cheaper, eco-friendly way to heat your home, we’re feeling quite wintery already. As we think about wrapping up warm and snug to protect ourselves from the freezing cold, how can we make sure our wells and boreholes are protected too? 

Can a well freeze?

Ground, or more accurately the water in the ground, will never freeze more than a few feet down in the UK. Due to your borehole and well water being a considerable distance lower than this (More than likely over 100ft) the water will not be in danger from freezing temperatures. However, you may have components at a depth that are susceptible to freezing temperatures, such as pipes and above-ground pumps. 

These components freezing up can cause a significant amount of damage to your system. It can cause leaks, blockages and sharp drops in water pressure. To keep your well running efficiently, it is vital that components are protected over the colder months. 

How to prepare a well for Winter

To ensure that you don’t run into any issues from freezing temperatures there are a few things you can do. For starters, as we say, anything below a few feet deep will be safe from freezing, so you don’t have to worry about any of that. However, any above ground components will need to be kept well insulated and protected from the elements. 

Pipes, such as those carrying the water between the borehole and your home or water storage tank, should be covered with foam or other insulative materials. Speaking of a water storage tank, this should, of course, be kept insulated or even inside if possible. Likewise, any surface level pumps and the wellhead could be covered if not inside, just to reduce the risk of any weather-related problems. 

Finally, if you run taps, even at a trickle, the flowing water will help to reduce the risk of freezing and will reduce the pressure build up, which could lead to pipes leaking and even bursting in the worst cases. The amount of water that would be ‘wasted’ by doing this is very little, compared to the amount of wasted time, effort and other resources that it helps to avoid!

What to do if your pipes have frozen this Winter

If you have been unfortunate enough to experience frozen pipes, you will know how much of a hassle it can be to fix. The first thing that you should do is open up taps to relieve the pressure that has built up in the pipes. Next, you need to slowly heat up the pipes. Heating the pipes too quickly can cause them to burst from the pressure. You also run the risk of warping or even melting pipes if your heat source is too hot. 

It may be a long process, but taking your time, going along the pipe with the directional flow of the water will clear the ice and have your water flowing freely again. 

Contact Us

For more information on how to protect your well or borehole this Winter, or if you’d like to know more about our services, please get in touch 

Contact Borehole Solutions today on 01733 200 501. We also offer an extensive range of other geotechnical services, including sonic, rotary and cable percussion drilling, as well as soakaway, water well and ground source heat pump installations! Or take a look at our Instagram page to see images of our previous work.