When It's Too Cold to Sealcoat...
Ground and air temperatures need to be at least 50 degrees F for a successful sealcoat, so Bill Dye, owner of Able Industries, suggests the following tips for preparing your sealcoating machinery for winter storage:
- Remove all liquid sealer from tank. Remove strainer basket from strainer housing, clean sealer and dried material from basket, and replace.
- Fill tank approximately 25% with water, add 3-4 scoops of laundry detergent, agitate for 30 minutes, remove water mix from tank.
- Turn off main valve from tank to strainer.
- Remove lid from strainer housing and add water to housing while slowly cycling pump. Open any valve on pressure side of pump and continue until water coming from outlet is clear. Turn off water.
- Add 1 gallon of anti-freeze to strainer basket housing and close all valves that may be open. Pressurize system with anti-freeze/water solution. Be sure no anti-freeze gets back into your tank.
- Turn off air supply to pump; drain air/water from air storage tank.
Storing Your Stripers and Striping in the Cold
"If temperatures are going to be below freezing, be careful not to leave water or other materials that can freeze sitting in the striper's fluid section," says Jon Knutson, worldwide product marketing manager at Graco Inc. "You can prevent these materials from remaining in your pump by running the system dry for 30 to 40 seconds after you're done flushing the striper. If you suspect that fluid may have frozen in your fluid section, be sure to bring the striper or its fluid section into a warm environment to completely thaw before you get started." To prepare your striper for extended storage first clean your pump with a compatible solvent — warm, soapy water if you use water-based paint, or the appropriate thinner if you use a solvent-based paint. "Once you've cleaned out the pump there are various fluids that you can pump into the fluid section," Knutson says. "These storage fluids are designed to have anti-corrosion properties and anti-freeze properties, so they're excellent for storing in the machine." Other tips: Grease all the fittings, such as hand levers or wheels; pack any bearings that may need it; clean the exterior of the striper with warm, soapy water; change the engine oil; and add a stabilizer to the gas, which will prevent the gas from varnishing.