Winterize dishwasher and washing machine


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Old 05-10-18, 06:03 AM
Z
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Winterize dishwasher and washing machine

Hello,

We had our dishwasher inlet valve crack due to freezing for the first time this past winter. We’ve always winterized our dishwasher and washing machine successfully in the past by running the fill cycles with the water off to empty the fill components and running the drain cycles with antifreeze to protect the drain compentnts.

However, this year our methods didn’t work. Is there really any fool proof way of protecting the tiny plastic fill components in both machines? It seems that small amounts of water could be trapped in any number of places?

I normally disconnect the washing machine from the plumbing, but I haven’t ever disconnected the dishwasher from the supply line.
 
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Old 05-10-18, 08:26 AM
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Do you blow out the pipe or just turn them on to let everything run out. The inlet valve on a dishwasher is not different then any other tap, except that it opens automatically. It does not push water automatically. If it has water pressure and the valve opens the water moves into the dishwasher and if it doesn't only the water that has gravity on it moves.

When I winterize my cottage I put a small 3 gallon air compressor on the outside hose bib tap. It only needs to be above 20psi or so and that air pressure blows out all the pipes when they are opened even if the pipe has an uphill component to it.

So for my dishwasher and washing machine I put anti freeze into both of them. Bring the compressor pressure to at least 20psi and then run the fill cycle. I usually eventually hear the air blowing through the fill valves. I then advance the cycle to the drain cycle and eventually hear the air blowing there as well. I then do it all over again, including the anti freeze and then after that I put anti-freeze in again and leave it till spring. Never had a problem with the appliances or any of the pipes with that method.

My guess is that you have proven that not all the water will empty with gravity, in your fill line...or perhaps you had all the other taps closed and it was kept in there by the "finger on the straw" non venting back pressure.

In either case a good air blow should solve the problem and just so you understand my method. Air pressure is allowed to regain to a minimum of 20psi after EACH pipe is blown out its tap...and then I do it all one more time to be sure.
 
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Old 05-10-18, 10:42 AM
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Thanks. My dad handcrafted a blow-out attachment for the outside bib but we lost it many years ago.

Do they sell them or is it back to the workshop?
 
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Old 05-10-18, 11:28 AM
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The biggest mystery of the mind is that from what I have seen, they do not make a connector for the air compressor that allows it to connect to the hose bib. You kind of have to go to Home Depot and jerry rig up something that works. Not overly difficult or expensive but still annoying that you have to go to that trouble.

I guess they figure that an air compressor is only used to blow up tires, drive nails or blow away dust.
 
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Old 05-10-18, 02:17 PM
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Just found one on amazon.ca for $25. Might still build my own though
 
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Old 05-10-18, 02:41 PM
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All you need is a female hose connector and a piece of 1/2 hose and blow into that.
 
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Old 05-11-18, 07:33 AM
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Usually it can be done cheaper then $25. I forget what I used but as pugsl said, you just need a female threaded connection to the hose bib and the other end to be something that fits into something with a compressor quick connect. I doubt I spent $25 but probably more then $10.

A Tip:
The higher the pressure the better for blowing water pipes but the reason I suggest 20psi minimum and not 50psi minimum or something like that is when you go to blow the hot water side of your pipes. There, you will be required to compress not only the air in the hot water pipes but also the air in your hot water tank. If it is a 40 gallon tank, like mine, it can take a while to compress 40 gallons of air, at atmospheric pressure, to even 20 psi above atmospheric. I think 20 psi requires about 60 MORE gallons of air to be crammed into that tank. If you want double the pressure you will need double the air which would take double the time to compress. I think you can see the issue. I am only using a 3 gallon compressor so I settle on 20psi. It has worked fine but I only have a one level cottage. If you have an upstairs you might need higher pressures. If you can turn off your hot water side when you blow out your cold pipes it can move the process along a little quicker for the cold side of your water system.

Obviously you need them both on (hot and cold) when you do your washing machine and the hot for your dishwasher. One tip when blowing out the hot is to pump up the pressure, then open a hot tap. Let the water gush out and then the air spray and then close it down after a few seconds of blowing misty air. That will leave the hot water tank a little pressurized above atmospheric for the next blow. It reduces the time for this job. A bigger air compressor will also speed things up but that is not necessary in my opinion.

Good luck.
 
 

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