Vacations are a thrill, aren’t they? The buzz of planning, the flurry of packing, and the delight of departure? But amidst all this excitement, it’s easy to overlook something crucial – the plumbing system in your home. Neglecting this aspect could lead to hefty repair bills once you return from your vacation.
This article aims to shed light on an often-neglected detail – pre-vacation plumbing preparation. It may seem tedious, but it is an important investment for your peace of mind. So let’s explore why and how to prep your plumbing before embarking on your well-deserved break.
Why Prep Your Plumbing Before Your Trip
Plumbing issues can pop up when least expected, and it can be challenging to handle them once they do. So imagine the possible outcomes if you’re not around to tackle an issue when it arises. A tiny leak unattended for a prolonged period might escalate into substantial water damage. When you face this problem, aside from defraying the labor costs, you can also end up spending roughly anywhere between AUD$150 and AUD$1,000 for repairs. That being the case, a quick check of your plumbing system before your trip can help prevent potential problems and save you some hard-earned cash.
While it’s still very crucial to get an assessment from a professional, like Dan’s Plumbing on the Fix a Tap directory, you can take the following measures to make sure your home stays safe while you’re away.
- Inspect Your Home For Leaks
Inspecting your home for leaks before leaving for a trip can prevent potential water leaks from causing significant damage to your home and save you money on repairs and water bills. It can also help you conserve water and energy and avoid coming home to a flooded or damaged home.
Therefore, it’s critical to check for any leaks or drips in the faucets, showerheads, and toilets. If you notice any leaks, it could be a sign of a problem with the pipes. You can also check for any unusual noises or low water pressure, which could indicate a blockage or other pipe issue. Also, if you notice any water damage or mold around your appliances or plumbing fixtures, it could be a sign of a leak or other pipe problem.
- Shut Off The Water Supply
A simple but effective way to prevent leaks in your home is to turn off the main water valve. By doing this, you can reduce the chances of a leak causing irreversible damage or flooding your house while you’re away.
Another reason to shut off the main water supply valve before going away is to conserve water. If there is a leak or other plumbing issue while you’re away, it could result in a significant amount of wasted water. This not only increases your water bill but also has a negative impact on the environment.
- Set The Water Heater
Water heaters continuously heat water, even when not in use. If left unattended, this problem can lead to wasted energy and damage. Setting your water heater to ‘vacation’ mode or turning it off is recommended because it conserves energy while keeping the water warm enough to prevent freezing.
That said, not all water heaters have a vacation mode setting, so be sure to check your owner’s manual or consult a professional from main water services in Burlington if you’re unsure how to prepare your water heater for an extended absence.
- Clean Your Gutters And Drains
Blocked gutters and drains might lead to an overflow, threatening your home’s structure. Thus, before you leave for your trip, it would be beneficial to rid gutters of leaves, debris, or dirt that might have collected over time.
To clean your gutters and drains, use a ladder and remove any debris using a small garden trowel or gloved hand. Next, flush out the gutters and downspouts with a garden hose to remove any remaining debris and ensure water flows freely. You can use a plumber’s snake to clear any stubborn blockages in the downspouts.
- Check Your Sump Pump
Checking your sump pump helps prevent potential flooding and water damage. If your sump pump fails while you’re away and a heavy rainstorm comes, groundwater can enter your basement and cause flooding and property damage.
So check your sump pump before leaving, inspect for damage and wear, and check the float switch and impeller for blockages. Moreover, test the pump by pouring water into the pit until it triggers the float switch. You need to ensure water is being pumped out and listen for any unusual sounds or vibrations.
- Insulate Exposed Pipes
In the grip of cold weather, uninsulated pipes might freeze and, worse, burst. Therefore, insulate any exposed pipes.
To insulate pipes, first, wrap the exterior and unheated pipes with polyurethane or fiberglass insulation. Next, fill any gaps around outdoor spigots with spray foam insulation to prevent cold air from entering. It’s also important to remove any backflow prevention devices before insulating faucets to prevent freezing.
- Seek Professional Help
If you’re unsure about any aspect of prepping your plumbing, it would be wise to seek professional help. A licensed plumber can properly and thoroughly inspect your home, identify potential water issues, and provide expert advice.
To find a reputable plumber, check local plumbing companies, ask for referrals, or use online directories for service providers to read customer reviews.
To avoid potential disasters and costly repairs, preparing your plumbing before leaving for vacation is wise. The preventive measures listed above can make all the difference between a relaxing vacation and a stressful return to a damaged home. Remember, investing in your home’s plumbing before your trip is investing in peace of mind.