Winter Preparation

With another beautiful summer bidding farewell, we can’t help but think about the approaching winter. Waste water presents unique challenges at every season of the year, but winter can make the pumper’s job especially difficult. What can you do to be prepared? Here are a couple tools that many pumpers have found helpful during the cold months.

1. Heat the valves. Frozen valves or chunks of ice in the valves on your truck can be very frustrating. There are several ways to heat them. Perhaps the most common is to have your truck equipped with heated valve jackets. This is an extension inserted just before the valve, which is plumbed with coolant lines from the engine. The engine coolant circulates around the pipe and heats the entire area. Heated valves use the same principle as heated valve jackets but have plumbing fittings directly connected to the valve itself. An easy add on product is an electric heater block that fastens to the outside of the valve or pipe. Insulated valve blankets can maximize the effectiveness of heating the valves by preventing heat escape and providing a barrier to the cold.

2. Heat the tank. Fresh water freezes faster than wastewater, so the first consideration would be to heat your fresh water compartment. The coolant lines can be plumbed through the bottom of your fresh water compartment to prevent freezing. In super cold climates you may consider running the lines through the waste water tank as well. Heat tape can also be used on your tank. Always be sure to dump your load if you are concerned about the water freezing overnight while the truck is not in motion.

3. Heat your toolbox. A small radiator with a fan can be installed in your toolbox to keep your tools from freezing. Small things like this can be very useful to keep moving parts from becoming stiff and prevent any moisture that gets into your toolbox from becoming frozen.
Different tank manufacturers have varied approaches to the challenges of winter. Contacting a full service manufacturer like Pik Rite, Inc can be helpful in deciding which options are best for your existing tank. The hassles of frozen equipment are avoidable even though the winter is not! Be prepared this year for a safe and profitable season.

Story by Kent Engle -Pik Rite, Inc.
Pik Rite manufactures and services commercial vacuum tanks, hoist units, roll-offs, slide-ins, portable toilet service units and tank trailers ranging in size from 200 to 6,500 gallons. Our 15-year steel tank warranty sets us apart from the competition. Tanks are available in steel, stainless steel and aluminum. Kent is the marketing coordinator at Pik Rite, Inc. Follow our blog posts at

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