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Plumbing Tips For Summer Vacation

Posted on 4 July 2023
Plumbing Tips For Summer Vacation

Summer is here and you are about ready to take off on a vacation? It’s important you make sure you take the proper steps to make sure your plumbing remains in good condition while you’re gone. These tips also apply to a seasonal home where you are going to have extended absences between visits.

Here’s a quick tip sheet on the top items you should look at to protect your plumbing while you’re away this summer.

  • Check & Adjust your water heater: Now is a good time to check your water heater, even though it is not working as hard as in the winter. Set your water heater on the lowest setting possible so you can reduce the amount of energy it consumes while you’re gone. If you wish, you can even turn it off completely, which will prevent any possibility of it flooding if you will be away for a long time. Note of caution, as hot water tanks can breed bacteria such as legionella, you should run the water thru and not use it for 24 hours once temperatures are reset to help eliminate any bacteria build up.  
  • Check your toilets: Also, a good time to be checking your toilet for any blockages and leaks. The last thing you want to deal with is a toilet not working properly – and have it leak or waste water while you are away using the good old fashioned food coloring test. Add some food coloring into the tank and wait 20-30 minutes. If you notice the food coloring in the bowl, then you have a leak that needs to be fixed. 
  • Shut the water off: While you’re away for an extended period of time, turn off the main water valve to your home. This will prevent a potential plumbing-related accident from occurring. You can even shut off the individual water to your appliances and sinks if you feel like taking the extra effort to do so. Note that water softeners, ice makers and other water using appliances need to be looked at first to ensure they are not damaged by the water being shut off. 
  • Check your gutters: While the gutters aren’t a plumbing component of your home, they are responsible for making sure the rainwater drains away from your house. Having them clear ensures water will flow away from your home in case of a heavy summer storm.
  • Test the sump pump: If there’s a big storm while you’re gone, it’s important to make sure your sump pump is fully operational. This is the best tool you have in your home to prevent basement flooding. 
  • Check appliances: Drain and empty appliances like the washing machine and dishwasher, which will help you prevent mold and mildew from forming inside of them. It’s a good idea to leave the doors of these appliances open after use so they can air out and avoid moisture and mildew buildup.
  • Drain sprinkler systems: If you have a sprinkler system on your property, make sure you’ve drained the system and shut it off completely unless you want it to water your yard while you’re on vacation. Otherwise, you run the risk of running up your water bill unnecessarily or having leaks form.

For more information or to get help with any of these steps before embarking on an extended vacation, contact one of the professionals at PipeMasters today: info@pipemasters.ca or (289) 404-9063. 

PipeMasters is part of Oakridge Plumbing Ontario Ltd. and serves the East GTA, Durham Region, North to Lindsay & Peterborough, out to Cobourg and all points in between. All Rights Reserved.