Winterization: Why is it important?

Beyond The Forecast

(WFRV) – Temperatures continue to gradually decline as Northeast Wisconsin gets closer to the winter months. Now when talking about winter, it is important to prepare your vehicles and pipes to avoid water damage.

Water is a rare molecule that actually expands when it freezes due to its structure. This results in the ice form of the molecule floating on top of the more dense liquid. In fact, when water turns from liquid to ice, it expands about 9%.

Antifreeze combats this expansion by preventing the impacts of extreme temperature swings. The coolant, or liquid, acts to maintain an even operating temperature within a vehicle, which lowers the temperature needed to freeze. The chemicals within the mixture will not allow water to freeze until temperatures are well below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

“Typically, when temperatures are below 32 degrees for 24 hours [it is a good time to winterize],” says Dan Kussow, Director of Services and Parts at Van Boxtel RV here in Green Bay.

Consequences of not winterizing your RV or boats can result in freezing and breaking lines.

Steps to winterize your RV:

  • Drain it
  • Pull the plug to the water heater
  • Make sure antifreeze is going through the lines

To prevent your pipes from damage:

  • Make sure they are insulated
  • Watch the thermostat – when temperatures start to drop below freezing, it’s time to winterize
  • Look for cracks and leaks

The average first day of snowfall in the fall for Green Bay occurs on November 12. In the event of snowfall, stick with Storm Team 5 for the latest:


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