6 Top Plumbing Priorities Before You Leave for Vacation

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Before you leave behind your plumbing in Pittsburgh for a long vacation follow our steps!

If you’re about to head out of town for an extended holiday vacation, you’ll first want to make sure your home is properly prepared. This is especially important when it comes to your plumbing in Pittsburgh. All too often, vacationers come home from a relaxing trip to a burst water pipe or some other stress inducing plumbing issue. Not only are plumbing issues while you’re away very stressful, they can also cause more damage to your home. To avoid coming home to expensive plumbing issues, follow our tips before you leave for your next long trip.

1. Make Sure To Turn off the Main Water Supply

To prevent any issues, turn off the water supply for your plumbing in Pittsburgh before leaving

A water main shutoff looks like a wheel or lever with a water pressure dial.

So, you’re getting ready to leave for the holidays and you want to make sure your plumbing in Pittsburgh stays functional for when you return. The first step you should take is turning off your water main. To locate your water main, you should search for a valve located in your basement. Then to ensure that the water main is completely turned off, try running your tap to make sure the water has stopped flowing through your pipes. 

By turning off the water main, you are preventing any major leaks from occurring in your home. The weather gets very cold in some places during the holidays, which causes pipes to freeze and burst. If your water main remains running while you’re out of town and your pipes freeze, you’ll likely be looking at an expensive set of repairs. You can also save money on your water bill by turning off your water main while you’re away.

Turning off the water should be your first step to prevent a lot of incidents from occurring while you are away. In most homes, the main water valve is in the basement and looks like a wheel or lever. For your final step, run the tap for a while to make sure that the water valve has been closed.

2. Find a Housesitter to Check on Your Plumbing

It’s a good idea to get a housesitter to make sure your plumbing in Pittsburgh is working properly

Hiring a house sitter is important for lots of reasons including preventing plumbing issues.

Though it’s important to turn off your water main to prevent damaging leaks and save money, you also shouldn’t leave your pipes dry for too long. If your pipes are without water for more than 2 weeks, there is a chance of adverse consequences. First and most unpleasant, sewer gases can build up in your pipes. Second, your pipes can begin to wear down and crack if they aren’t being used regularly.

To avoid these issues, recruit a trusted neighbor to check on your plumbing in Pittsburgh while you’re away. Instruct your housesitter to turn on the water main, and check for any leaks or any odd smells. Then, once they’ve verified there aren’t any issues, they should turn the water main off again.

3. Keep Your Swimming Pool Pump On

If your swimming pool is still open, it’s a good idea to keep the pump running while you’re away

Pool pumps and sprinklers still need water while you’re away.

Before you go ahead and shut off your water main, know that there are a few exceptions to the rule. For example, fixtures like pool pumps or sprinkler systems will require water while you’re away. If you don’t have these fixtures on your property, you have the OK to turn off your water main. However, if you have an open pool or are using a sprinkler system for your yard while you’re away it’s a better idea to turn off the appliances in your home individually.

Should you turn your water main fully off, you could end up coming home to an algae covered pool and dead grass — and nobody wants to come home to that.

4. Before You Leave, Close All Faucets and Check for Leaks

Avoid wasting water while you’re away by ensuring no water is leaking from your home fixtures

Your leaky faucet is a major water waster so it’s best to fix it before you leave for vacation.

Leaky faucets may seem like little more than nuisance, but they actually can run up your water bill over time. This problem is compounded if you go away for a long time. Depending on how long you’re gone, a leaky faucet could cost you hundreds of dollars. So, before you leave on your trip, make sure that there is no water leaking out of any faucets or other appliances in your home. Check each faucet, toilet, and sink and once you’ve determined there are no leaks, youre ready to go. Again, this is a good step to take if you need to keep your water main turned on while you’re away. 

5. Remember to Turn Off Your Water Heater

Water heaters use a lot of energy, so remember to to turn off your water heater before you end up overpaying on utilities

If you don’t turn off your water heater you can end up paying the price in utilities.

Turning off your water heater is one of the most important things to remember before you leave the house. Water heaters use a lot of energy and can add to your utility bills while you’re away. To prevent this from happening, simply use the dial at the base of the water heater and turn it off. Once you turn off the water heater, double check to make sure that there is no water leaking out of the bottom, as this is a sign you will need to replace your water heater. 

6. For Extended Trips, Call a Professional to Inspect Your Plumbing

Once you get the “OK” from your local plumbing company, it’s time to hit the road

Avoid any surprises upon return by hiring a plumber to inspect your home.

If you are leaving for more than 2 weeks for the upcoming holidays, it is a good idea to schedule your annual plumbing inspection before you leave. That way, if there are any current issues with your plumbing in Pittsburgh, your local plumber will be able to fix them before you leave. Peace of mind is an important part of a relaxing trip, so make sure that your plumbing is ready to go when you take your next trip.

Don’t come home to a plumbing disaster! Follow these tips and your plumbing will be prepared for your next extended vacation. Happy traveling!

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