Prep Your Plumbing Before Leaving for Vacation

David Deem

Heading out of town this summer? Good for you! But before you pack your bags, consider prepping your plumbing.

"As vacationers embark on their trips, it's easy to get so focused on the destination that they can lose sight of their return," says Richard Hart, co-owner of Harts Services. "Before even leaving, it's important to take a few small precautions to avoid returning to any plumbing disasters back at home. That's the last thing you want after a relaxing time on the beach, in the mountains or wherever you choose to go."

Hart advises that residents take the following steps to prevent any plumbing disasters from taking place while they are away from their homes:

Turn off the water main valve – Water damage from a pipe leak or burst is among the most damaging plumbing issues one can have while away from home. A significant leak that flows unchecked for days can do massive amounts of damage. To avoid this, just turn the water off.

Flush and clean the garbage disposal – Run warm water, turn the garbage disposal on and then pour a half cup of vinegar down the disposal. Add some citrus juice or peels for a nice, fresh smell. This will naturally clean out any excess residue and ensure there are no unpleasant odors when upon your return.

Use the water heater's vacation mode – Water heaters don't know when people aren't home, so they continue to maintain the hot water inside the unit. Many water heaters have a vacation mode setting that can be used to cut down on the water heater's energy usage. For units without a vacation mode setting, turn the thermostat down a few degrees.

"These three tips can help prevent water damage, save money and prevent you from coming home to some gnarly smells," Hart says. "You can do all this in about 10-15 minutes, which is a small price to pay for peace of mind on vacation."

Source: Hart Services



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