Tucson Water's Winterizing Tips

Tucson Water recommends that residential and business customers insulate exposed water pipes, plumbing, and backflow assemblies as part of their preparation for winter and the frigid air that sometimes finds its way into southern Arizona.

  • Wrap exposed pipes and plumbing with proper insulation, available at plumbing supply and home improvement stores.
  • Use temporary insulation, such as towels or blankets, until a better option is available.
  • Winterize your irrigation system, evaporative cooler, and backflow prevention assembly.

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Free by mail from Tucson Water (any or all):
"Winter Prep Tip Sheet" pdf document
“What You Should Know About Backflow Prevention” pdf brochure
"How to Flush Your Water Heater" infographic

E-mail your name, postal mailing address, and request to our Public Information / Conservation Office (PICO).

If you have to turn off the water to your home or business, do so at the shut-off valve, not at the water meter.

If you need the water meter valve turned off, call Tucson Water's emergency number at 520-791-4133 or Customer Service at 520-791-3242 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday). Learn where your shut-off valve is located in case you need to turn off the water in an emergency situation.

  1. Locate your water meter. Most are located at the front of a home or business near the sidewalk, or in the rear, such as an alley.
  2. Remove the lid. Behind the meter, on the side closest to your home or business, you should find either a gate valve or a ball valve. To close a gate valve, turn to the right; to close a ball valve, turn ¼ of the way to the right.
  3. If you cannot see or turn the valve, call Tucson Water. We will respond as soon as staff are available. Call our emergency number at 520-791-4133 or Customer Service at 520-791-3242 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday).
  4. Call a plumber for assistance if the break is on your property (between the meter and your home or business or if inside your home or business).

To report running water or leaks, water problems where the main water valve needs to be turned off, or a pressure decrease, send us an e-mail.

Additional resources:

Current Weather Conditions for Tucson (Tucson International Airport)

Graphical Weather Forecasts (National Weather Service-Tucson Sector)

Winterizing Your Home: Furnace Safety (Tucson Fire Department/KGUN 9)

Cold Weather Tips for Pets (Humane Society of Southern Arizona/KGUN 9 "The Morning Blend")