Heating a home

Is it possible to drain the water from the pipes and still heat a house at 50 - 55 degrees?
The source of heat for this home is an oil burner with base board hot water.
I'd like to keep a home at 50+ degrees but still have no water in water pipes for drinking and toilet use in case of an electric outage which could freeze the pipes.
Thank you. E.
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long eddy wrote:

If you keep it at 50 F and if you are only draining the domestic water, not the heating water, most homes will be fine. However, on a very cold night if one of those heating pipes is close to an outside wall and if the heat does not kick in often enough, it might freeze and once it starts... well it could be a mess.
I really doubt if you will have a problem, but since it likely was not designed to idle at 50 F I don't think anyone would want to guarantee it.
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long eddy wrote:

The hot water heating system is a separate, closed system. Turning off the domestic water supply and draining the water from toilets and sinks will not affect it. But if there is an outage that allows the heat pipes to freeze, they can burst and leak too. And if the boiler freezes it could be damaged, which gets pretty expensive. -- H
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On 11 Dec 2005 13:44:42 -0800, "Heathcliff"

Well my friend who runs a burlar alarm business says that almost all control panels these days have a low temperature sensor, and there is a high temp sensor in the panel or closer to the furnace, somewhere.
And there should be a water level sensor, and this works best if the system has central station monitoring. The control panel says if it is hot or cold or wet, or if there's a breakin. For hot they send the fire department.
I was thinking of going away for 3 months, and probaly can't rent this place, so I'll probably have to sign up for monitoring.
Now the smoke alarm is connected to the siren outside (I know how to do it right.) but I don't know if anyone will pay attention. A burglar might run if the siren goes off, but fires know no fear.
I don't know what kind of alarm you could use for freezing temps inside. An announcement.
OH yeah, X-10 and some others have voice dialers, the things that old ladies might wear a fob for, that will dial four numbers in a row, playing the same message until someone responds with the right code.
You could have a general message that the house is too cold or too hot or too wet or broken into. Then you could trust whoever you have it call to do something appropriate.

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On Sun, 11 Dec 2005 20:29:41 +0000, long eddy wrote:

I'm not sure if I'm understanding you correctly, but here is what I would do... drain and blow out your water pipes. In your boiler system, drain half your water out and add an inhibited propylene glycol such as NO-BURST or another brand. Mixed 50-50 with your boiler water should give you burst protection to -60 degrees. Use your boiler as normal.
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wrote:

Why don't they do that all the time, at installation. Everyone goes away sometimes. Most people go away for 2 weeks some time, and often do this in the winter.
Shouldn't every system have this?
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Cost is one factor, not just for the glycol, but for a convenient method of handling it to add to the system. If it is leaked out or changed over time, it would also give a false sense of security. I have no idea how many heating systems freeze every year and how cost effective it is.
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wrote:

Oh that's right. There's an automatic water-adder, isn't there?
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