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Winterizing Rears Pac Tank - antifreeze?

Posted by Jon Place 
Winterizing Rears Pac Tank - antifreeze?
November 07, 2021 03:34AM
Hello all, just replaced some parts on pump after freezing / cracking of plastic housing. As I looked back through my manual regarding winter preparation, there was nothing about antifreeze. Nonetheless, I proceeded with several gallons of nontoxic antifreeze into the pump, lines, hoses, etc.

Does this sound right for winter prep in Vermont? I don't want any more costly mistakes. Thanks, Jon

Sourwood Mountain Orchard
Zone 5 in Vermont
Re: Winterizing Rears Pac Tank - antifreeze?
November 09, 2021 02:45AM
I picked up a Rears 200 gallon pull tank this season. My former orchardist lost a pump on one of his last year even though he had put antifreeze in it, obviously did something wrong. My Rears manual said to pump antifreeze through the pump, however as I was doing that I looked at how the pump was hooked up. Four bolts hold the plate it is mounted on to the frame. The inlet and outlet are threaded for easy removal. So I decided to insure I wouldn't have a problem, I removed the pump. All the hoses drained out and my pump is now in my basement kitchen. Next season all I have to do is mount the plate back to the frame, which I marked, hook the agitator belt on the pulley, attach the hoses and I'll be good to go.

Just for good measure I pulled out my manual from Rears, sadly it isn't as well produced as their sprayers. The procedure on winterising is near the back of the manual. Pages aren't numbered, but it is on the page that has 'PUMP MAINTENANCE' at the top with the 'AR' symbol of the pump manufacturer. Categories are 'Every 200 hours and at season's end', 'Replacing air dome diaphragm', 'Winter Storage', and 'Replacing suction diaphragm'. If this page is missing, let me know and we'll figure out a way to get you a copy from mine.

Washington Okanogan Valley
Zone 6b
Re: Winterizing Rears Pac Tank - antifreeze?
November 19, 2021 02:55AM
My PakTank has been under two sleeping bags and a big tarp, this under roof cover in a three-sided shed, for the past month. During that time we had several nights in the low 20s, and even broached the teens earlier this week. Yet no debilitating freezing of note within the spray tank. So why wait to winterize? It's the intention of fall nutrient sprays . . . aimed at priming bud reserves for next season and then the more familiar decomposition boost (aka Fall Holistic Spray, spoken about in my 2011 book). The reality this season was not quite as intended, however, and thus only today did I apply a tank's worth of effective microbes, liquid fish, and neem oil — along with some calcium, boron, and manganese. Better late than never? We'll see if those nutrients have any jumpstart implications next season in the first round of sap testing at pink . . . yet without much for leaves actively photosynthesizing at this point . . . bark absorption and bud deposits are not as certain. Still, a guy can hope. My sprayer is now finally "winter ready" with two gallons of RV antifreeze drawn into the diaphragm pump, hoses, and spray gun. Seems this is a saga that gets repeated every fall!

Lost Nation Orchard
Zone 4b in New Hampshire

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/26/2021 04:21PM by Michael Phillips.
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