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Anyone have personal experience with a "first flush" system in freezing environments?

 
Posts: 157
Location: Idaho
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I'm contemplating one at a remote off-grid mountain location where it could go for weeks with no attention. I wouldn't think too much of it, however, rather than snow accumulating, with minimal (ie normal) freeze/thaw cycles, we've been encountering substantial melt during many mid-winter days and even rain. Yet, it's still freezing hard during most nights.

I can envision some problematic scenarios with a "first flush"...and have some ideas how to compensate. However, I would love to hear the experiences of others. Anyone?
 
pollinator
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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I put small bleeder holes in the bottom of ours so the pipe drains completely between rain events.

 
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I'm curious about this, too.
 
Rusty Bowman
Posts: 157
Location: Idaho
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Well, I have a full good winter on my system now. To cope with freezing issues, last fall I put a valve in so I could shut off the "first flush" during the winter and open in the spring. No issues at all. Went up to this locale this spring and found a tank full of water! So, I plumbed down to my yurt and now have running water. Super excited about that!
 
Rusty Bowman
Posts: 157
Location: Idaho
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Well, here it is, shortly after building. It's on its third winter now. The hole in my first flush proved to be a touch big, allowing water to leak out faster than a drizzling rain could overcome. Because of this, I've just left the valve closed so as to completely bypass the washer until I have time to dial it in.

I'm very pleased with the system otherwise. Works really well and the cistern fills quicker than I thought it would. This spring, I'll be running the overflow downhill to a wood-fired hot tub I made.... then extend the roofing on the harvester to collect even more water, to help flush the hot tub.



 
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