How to Avoid Home Plumbing Problems While You Are on Vacation
Many Americans are leaving town for spring break. Kids and adults alike work hard throughout the year, and when spring break rolls around in March or April, we are all ready for a break. Maybe you will be driving or flying to a beach destination to relax and enjoy some warm sunshine. Or perhaps you are taking this opportunity to visit family members who you don’t get to see as often as you would like. Lots of families plan to spend spring break relaxing at home and avoiding the crowds, and wait until school is out of session for the summer to take their vacation.
Wherever you go, there is a lot to do to get ready for vacation. You have to pack all your clothes and necessities for yourself and the kids. You have to put the mail on hold and cancel the newspaper delivery. You have to board the dog. We know you are busy, but you really should consider adding one more small item to your to-do list. Spending just a few minutes getting the house ready before you leave can save you a lot of trouble in the long run. When you get home from vacation, you are likely to be exhausted from the trip. There is nothing worse than arriving home to find out that a major home plumbing crisis occurred while you were gone. We just never know anymore when we might have a sudden cold snap, and that wildly fluctuating weather can damage your plumbing. Just follow these easy tips to avoid home plumbing problems while you are on vacation.
1. Turn the furnace down to save on utility costs while the house is empty. Don’t get carried away, though. Keep the furnace set at 55 degrees or above in order to keep your pipes from freezing while you are gone.
2. Turn your water heater up just a bit. This will help it to retain hot water and be ready for use when you get home. Keep it at a maximum of 120 degrees so that no one gets burned.
3. If there are portions of your home that are uninsulated and contain pipes, like your basement or crawl space, you should add insulation to those pipes. You can do this by wrapping the pipes with heat tape or heat cables that are controlled by your thermostat. This helps to prevent your pipes from freezing.
4. Turn off the water supply valves to your washing machine. If you don’t turn them off, a hose could burst while you are gone and flood your home.
5. Check for leaks around the house. If you know of a running toilet or leaky appliance, make sure to repair it before you leave. Otherwise, it could start leaking more heavily and cause major water damage when you are not around to take care of it.
6. Consider installing a flood detection device. This device works much like a smoke detector. If the home begins to flood, an audible alarm will sound. This will notify your neighbors or house sitter so that the situation can be addressed before major damage is done.
Use these tips to protect your home from plumbing problems while you are vacationing. If you need some help with your plumbing, contact Scott English Plumbing. We are available to handle routine repairs as well as emergencies that come up anytime. Call Scott English Plumbing for service today.