Are you and your family looking forward to a relaxing vacation? While you're getting ready to head out of town, don't forget to take care of any last many plumbing issues. You don't want to get home from your getaway to find the basement flooded or other plumbing problems. Take a moment to check out this list of plumbing must-dos before you head out of town.
Turn off the Water
All day, every day water runs through various points of your home. Most people don't realize how much water is sitting in their pipes until a washing machine hose breaks or a pipe bursts. If you're going on an extended holiday, do yourself a favor and turn off the water supply to the following:
- Washing machine
- Outdoor faucets
- Water heater
Some water heaters have a vacation mode. If your water heater is equipped with this, simply adjust the settings.
What about the main water valve? Should I shut this off?
It depends on how long you're going to be traveling. If you're out of town for the normal one or two-week vacation, then it's probably not necessary. However, if you're traveling for a month or more, turning off the main water line provides additional protection and peace of mind.
Check for Leaks
Checking for leaks ensures that you won't have any water damage in the house. However, not all leaks are visible. Slab leaks, which exist in pipes beneath the foundation of a home, often last for weeks or months before any visible damage happens. Call your local plumber to perform slab leak detection to make sure there isn't going to be a problem while you're away.
Call for a Water Heater Inspection
Even if you turn the water supply off to the water heater, there are still parts that can cause problems if they're faulty. For example, make sure the T&P relief valve (temperature and pressure) is working. This is valve releases pressure when it builds in the tank. If the valve isn't working correctly, the tank could explode if pressure increases.
Also, have the tank checked out for leaks. Corrosion is a serious problem for older tank water heaters. You don't want to deal with this mess when you get back.
Test Your Sump Pump
If you have a sump pump in your home, make sure it's working. Heavy rainstorms that happen while you're away can flood your basement if the sump pump doesn't work. Consider installing a battery or water-based backup sump pump for added protection.
Schedule an Inspection
Annual inspections are a great way to ensure all the parts of your residential plumbing are working correctly. Scheduling this inspection yearly right before your vacation is ideal and lets you fully relax knowing everything is okay.
Leave Plumbing Information
Is someone watching your house while you're away? Give this person the name and number of your plumber. If anything would happen plumbing-wise to your house while you're away, the problem can get taken care of immediately.
For more tips to get your home's plumbing vacation ready, contact your area plumber.