If you’re going to be away from the house for a few days, a week, or even longer you’ll want to do a few things to your plumbing before you leave. Our plumbers at Moonlight Plumbing wanted to share a few, simple plumbing obligations that can help save money. It can even, potentially, save you from water mess caused by a leaky or broken pipe while you’re away.
Imagine it, you leave the house to go see family for a week. The best “vacation” we can get during quarantine. You really enjoy catching up with everyone and getting out of the house. You’re feeling relaxed for maybe the first time in a while. But, when you return home there’s a puddle of water on the kitchen floor. Your head starts spinning on where to start to clean up the mess. Before you arrive at a solution, you’re panicked at what broke and how much is it going to cost to fix it? Well, we want to provide you and your family with a helpful plumbing checklist to potentially avoid messes like this. You can use our list below to help check your plumbing is all set before you leave the house.
Moonlight Plumbing Before You Leave Checklist
Turn off the main water supply
- No one is going to be home and using the water, so no one will be missing it. Save yourself the potential headache from a water pipe breaking and leaking while you’re not home!
Clean the garbage disposal
- Probably one of the smelliest places in our house. Ensuring your disposal doesn’t have food sitting in it while you’re away will help minimize the smell. You should run a disposal frequently anyway, but especially do it right before you leave for a period of time.
Clean the toilets
- Another smelly spot in our homes. Flushing the toilets frequently helps to eliminate/minimize odors. But, if no one flushes it for a week it can get quite the odor if not appropriately cleaned before leaving.
Check the sump pump
- If there is a major flood in your basement due to a broken pipe, heavy rainfall, etc. you want to ensure your sump pump is going to help get the water out. You can test your pump by pouring a bucket of water into it and waiting for it to kick on. If it does, you’re all set. If not, give us a call.
Inspect and turn off water heater
- If you’re turning off your main water supply, you certainly don’t need hot water. If you have a tank-based water heater, you can simply turn off the valve. This will also help save money because the water will no longer continue to cycle to keep warm while you’re away. You can actually drain the water out of your system and inspect for leaks before leaving as well. To be sure you do these maintenance preparations correctly, contact one of our professionals.
Shut off automatic ice maker
- This is one a lot of people don’t think about. Your ice maker will continue to run and cost you money even though no one is using the ice.
Ensure outdoor sprinklers work properly (if you have them)
- If you have an automatic sprinkler system, check that it’s set to run at the correct times each day. Also, double check that it’s following the proper schedule. The last thing you need is dead grass from the sprinklers not running, or a flooded yard from them never shutting off!
Leave washer and dishwasher doors open
- Final little piece of information is to keep the washer and dishwasher doors open. This will help prevent a musty/old food smell, as well as mold. While unpleasant if you forget this, just be sure to run them empty when you get home. Try using a cleaner when you run it to get the pipes clear again and help the smell go away.
Remember, once you return home, to turn on the water heater, main water supply, sprinklers, ice maker, etc. You’ll want to flush the toilets and run the garbage disposal again. You’ll want to do this as soon as possible because regular flushing and rinsing helps prevent odors in these appliances. But, if you forget to do any of these things before leaving for vacation, and you find yourself in a messy situation – call our professionals at Moonlight Plumbing! Unfortunately, we’ve seen countless flooded rooms, broken/leaky pipes, and faulty appliances in general. But because of this, we know how to properly clean up and repair the mess the first time around. We’re here if you need us!