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Frozen Water Service Lines
Frozen Water Service Lines
Due to continuous extreme cold weather this winter, the frost table is lower than previous years and this is resulting in widespread frozen water service lines in some places throughout the community.
 
If your water line has already frozen or if you believe you may have problems with your line, you can help by letting the water run with a stream the size of the diameter of a pencil. Letting the water run at this level will average .25 gpm (1/4 gallon per minute) which equals 10,800 gallons in 30 days, or approximately 1,440 cubic feet.
 
If your line is susceptible to freezing and the water is run at a slower rate, a freeze-up may still occur. A water stream the size of a pencil lead/tip which equates to about a 1/8 gallon per minute for a continuous water run, equals about 5,400 gallons per month. This slower rate is generally not enough to prevent freezing conditions.
 
An indicator of an impending water service line freeze up is water temperature. You may check the temperature of your water after running it on cold. Allow your water to run until it is cold and then check the temperature. The water temperature should be around 45 degrees. If the temperature drops to 40 degrees or below, you may have an impending freeze up and the frost may be getting close to your service line.  If your water is rusty in color, this may also be an indication that your water line is starting to freeze up and you should run water on a continuous basis.
 
The risk of frozen service lines could continue for several weeks and/or months.

The City of St. James City Council reviewed this situation at their meeting on February 18, however action on policies relating to this has been tabled.

If you have problems with your water lines, call City Hall during business hours at (507) 375-3241 or after hours emergency at the Communication Center at (507) 375-3222.