When preparing for winter, people will do a lot of things like stocking up on firewood, changing out air filters for the furnace, and making sure they have plenty of warm socks. So what do large facilities like Fort Knox do to prepare? We spoke with Dave Thomas, Utility Supervisor at Fort Knox, to find out.
The winterizing process starts on October 15th and typically takes about one month to complete. TGG personnel follow a rigorous Preventive Maintenance checklist and accomplish scheduled winterization tasks on some thirty different facilities and systems including landscape irrigation lines, outside latrines, drinking fountains, a water park, and outdoor recreation areas and sports complexes that are vulnerable to Kentucky’s freezing winter temperatures.
The process primarily consists of turning off and draining the water to various buildings and systems that will not be used during the winter but may also include shutting off power or gas. These buildings will not have heat, so doing this prevents water lines from freezing and bursting.
Other preventative measures include draining backflow preventers, water heaters, and water hydrants, opening water valves in unheated buildings, adding antifreeze to toilets and sink drains, and clearing out any remaining water from pipes and lines with compressed air. Any water left in the pipes and lines is susceptible to freezing and could result in a rupture or burst, causing significant damage come springtime as buildings and facilities are brought back online.
Dave says that the best way to prepare is simply by “knowing when to start winterizing, de-winterizing, and setting time aside to do this work.” Their system for winterizing comes from a carefully planned list that the Government has provided for them, as well as facing other potential winter problems as needed.
When it comes to maintaining your facilities, The Ginn Group is the provider of choice. Our facilities maintenance services bring together the right people, processes, and knowledge for a unified solution caring for the built environment and surroundings. To find out more, contact us today!