winterize an apartment

Help Support Plumbing Forums:

Kdoowthawash

New Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
Czech Republic
Hello,
I'm writing from the Czech Sudetenland, and it can get cold here - for Europe anyway - down to about -20 in Winter sometimes. I have an apartment on the top floor of our little block of flats. It's the only flat on the whole top floor. Directly below some of it is my wife's flat where we now live, and the other three flats are owned by a company and are basically empty year round. There's also very little or no thermal insulation in the building. The second winter here my pipes froze and cracked. I then got the supply pipe to my flat capped so I have no problem now but also no water up there. It's difficult to get agreement for work done to this building, and realistically it could be many years till I can get agreement to install insulation up there. (For whatever reasons, the owner of the other three flats doesn't seem to want work done). It all sounds grim, I know, but we live here and as we say, an Englishman's home is his castle ... so I'd like to find ways round the difficulties and stay here.
So my question -
is there a way to design the plumbing in my flat so that in a cold winter the system can be drained?

I have an idea:
I'm imagining a thermally insulated box where the mains comes into the flat. In that box would be the water meter and its shut-off valve, and then after that the pipe would branch, and one pipe would lead off directly into the waste water system - it would have its own shut-off valve of course! But the main supply pipe would go on out of the insulated box to supply the flat. So around late December, I could open the box, close of the mains supply, open the valve to the waste system and drain what's there. Then I would empty out anything else like taps and so on in the flat. If I placed the box right, it would take up some of the heat from the centrally heated space below where we live, which would also help keep the metere and pipes in it above zero. Does this sound feasible?

Or is there another way?
 

Geofd

Moderator
Staff member
Professional
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2018
Messages
1,982
Reaction score
292
Location
Boston, Massachusetts
Best way I think would to be
Locate a warn area install a valve that would isolate you flat
The install a tee another valve and a fitting that would hook up to an air compressor
Hook up you air compressor
Open 1 fixture at a time(removeaerators/shower heads)
Let the air push all the water out 1 fixture at a time
 

Kdoowthawash

New Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
Czech Republic
Hi Geofd.
Sounds good to me.
I'm guessing that a compressor would be more thorough than gravity.
And that maybe it's not a good thing to have a direct invisible connection from the
mains to the waste!
I think I'll add a tap somewhere soon after the entrance point for the compressor - then in case of the compressor not working I could drain a lot of it manually into buckets or the floor if it has a slope and drain.
Ok, I can start to plan :)... Thanks
 

Geofd

Moderator
Staff member
Professional
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2018
Messages
1,982
Reaction score
292
Location
Boston, Massachusetts
Hi Geofd.
Sounds good to me.
I'm guessing that a compressor would be more thorough than gravity.
And that maybe it's not a good thing to have a direct invisible connection from the
mains to the waste!
I think I'll add a tap somewhere soon after the entrance point for the compressor - then in case of the compressor not working I could drain a lot of it manually into buckets or the floor if it has a slope and drain.
Ok, I can start to plan :)... Thanks
We had a home in a cold climate until recently it was not used during the winter so that’s how we winterized
Our house we also put rev anti freeze in the p traps and toilet, if you have a cloths washer you can drain the pump or run some rev anti freeze thru that rev=rv it’s auto correcting
 
Top