During the winter months, freezing temperatures can wreak havoc with your home's plumbing, especially if you have a well system. Frozen water can cause your well's pumps to burst and can render your pump useless, leaving you and your family without water in the dead of winter suddenly and without any notice. Thankfully, there are a few things that you can do to ensure that your home's well water supply stays flowing even when there's snow on the ground.
Insulate the Pipes
The best way to ensure that your plumbing does not become frozen and leaks don't develop during the winter months is to install plumbing insulation around the pipes. Plumbing insulation can be found at most hardware stores. All you have to do is cut it to the length of your exposed plumbing and secure it in place using the adhesives that are attached to the interior of the insulation: you can do this in a matter of minutes with a utility knife.
Pump House Insulation
Your well pump is usually installed either in a shed on your property, or some other small housing unit that protects it from the elements. Before the winter weather actually sets in, you should check the integrity of the house to ensure that there are no gaps in the windows and doors. If you haven't already, you may want to install insulation in the walls and ceiling of the pump house (or replace old insulation) in order to keep the pump warm and the water flowing.
Pump House Heating
Beyond simply installing insulation and ensuring that there are no leaks in the structure of the pump house, you may want to consider installing a space heater in the pump house. This is really only relevant if you suffer from extremely intense winter temperatures, which can cause freezing regardless of the amount of insulation that you have installed around you plumbing and pump. While space heaters can represent an added long run cost in terms of monthly energy bills, it's well worth the alternative of having to deal with a burst pipe or a damaged pump in the middle of the winter. However, be careful when setting up a space heater of the risk of fire: you'll want to keep flammable materials away from the heating element, and keep the temperature turned to a moderate degree (no need for summer weather in the pump house – just keep it above freezing).