No More Frozen Waterline - Heat-Line Freeze Protection Systems No More Frozen Waterline - Heat-Line Freeze Protection Systems
No More Frozen Waterline - Heat-Line Freeze Protection Systems

Cottage Life Spring 2016 Issue
Allan Britnell

illustration of in-pipe heating cable and tee fitting

As you struggle to get your pump and waterline back in place this spring, pause for a moment to think how nice getting that chore off your to-do list—permanently— would be. Then consider this: installing an in-line waterline-heating cable is a oneday job that will keep the water flowing to your cottage all year.

There are two basic types of in-pipe heating cable: those that heat continuously along their entire length, such as WinterGard and EasyHeat, and those that self-regulate, adjusting the temperature up or down as needed, section by section, such as HeatLine’s Retro-Line.

You’re revisiting your wheelbarrow after winter’s repose, and its tire is flat, so you probably hook up the old bike pump to do its pneumatic best. But that may not work if the tire is tubeless. To stay inflated, a tubeless tire relies on a good pressure seal between the tire and the rim. JOB JAR Inflation policy Both types are available as 120-volt, GFCIprotected systems that plug into a standard electrical outlet. Plug-in lines can heat a polyethylene waterline for up to 250 feet. Retro-Line offers a hard-wired, 240-volt system that will work for up to 550 feet. WinterGard and EasyHeat can keep waterlines up to 1¼” diameter ice-free, while Retro-Line can handle a 2″ line.

Complete systems, including the cable, thermostat, and fittings retail for $10 to $15 per linear foot. Operating costs will vary with the length of the cable, whether or not your waterline is buried or insulated, and the local electricity rates; in most situations, you can have year-round water for $200 or less per year.—Allan Britnell

Follow Us

Newsletter Signup