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Heading off on a much-anticipated vacation is always exciting, but before you can fully relax, it's important to make sure your home's plumbing is in good shape. At Mr. Rooter Plumbing, we understand the peace of mind that comes with knowing your home is protected from potential water damage while you're away. Here's a guide to help you prep your plumbing system before you hit the road.

Conduct a Thorough Leak Inspection

Before you leave for vacation, a comprehensive leak check is essential. Undetected leaks can cause extensive water damage. Start by examining all visible pipes, faucets, and fixtures in your home. Look for any signs of moisture, corrosion, or puddles, especially around sinks, toilets, and under appliances. Pay extra attention to less frequently used areas like basements and crawl spaces. These areas are often out of sight and can harbor leaks for extended periods. If you find any leaks, call a professional plumber immediately. A plumbing repair service can address these issues and ensure they don’t escalate while you’re away.

Turn Off the Main Water Valve

One of the easiest and simplest ways to avoid water damage while you’re on vacation is to shut off your home’s main water valve. This step ensures that no water can enter your plumbing system, eliminating the risk of leaks or bursts while you’re away. Find your main water valve, which is typically found in the basement, garage, or outside near the water meter. Once found, turn it clockwise until it stops. To ensure it's fully off, try running a faucet for a few seconds; the water should stop completely. If you have an older home or are unsure where your water valve is located, a quick visit from a plumber can help. They can show you where the valve is, how to operate it, and even check its condition to make sure it’s working properly.

Adjust Your Water Heater

Your water heater is an essential part of your home’s plumbing system, and preparing it for your absence is a must. Most water heaters have a vacation setting or a temperature dial you can adjust. Lowering the temperature setting or using the vacation mode reduces energy consumption and prevents the heater from continuously running while you’re away. For tankless water heaters, consult the manufacturer’s instructions on how to properly set it for vacation. This often involves adjusting settings on a digital interface or turning off the heater completely. If you’re unsure about any step in this process, plumbers can provide guidance and ensure everything is set correctly.

Ensure Drains Are Clear

Check all drains in your home, including sinks, showers, bathtubs, and laundry areas. Make sure they are running smoothly and are free from blockages. To clear slow drains, use a mix of baking soda and vinegar, followed with a rinse of hot water. This natural method can effectively remove minor clogs without harsh chemicals. For more stubborn clogs, a plunger or a drain snake might be necessary. Pay particular attention to kitchen drains and garbage disposals. Run cold water and a small amount of dish soap through the disposal to help clear any residual debris.

Arrange for a Neighborly Check-In

Having a trusted neighbor check in on your home while you’re on vacation adds an extra layer of security. Provide them with a spare key and ask them to inspect your home periodically. They can ensure everything is in order and address any unexpected issues, including plumbing concerns. Leave them a list of things to check, such as ensuring no faucets are dripping, toilets are functioning correctly, and no unusual odors or moisture are present. If they notice any problems, they can contact a plumbing company on your behalf. Consider installing smart home devices like water leak detectors and smart thermostats that can alert you to potential issues.

Is It Time for You to Schedule an Inspection or Plumbing Repair Service?

Do you want to make sure your home’s plumbing system remains in top condition while you’re away? At Mr. Rooter Plumbing, we provide high-quality, professional plumbing services that can help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment so you can avoid plumbing trouble and focus on enjoying your vacation. 

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