7 Ways to Prepare Your Plumbing Before Leaving on a Winter Vacation
Posted by Drain King Plumbers on 21-12-2022
Many people like to travel during winter and take long breaks to see the world. While winter is a great time to explore new cities and have fun with your family, it is wise to create a plumbing checklist before you leave for your vacation. Canadian winters are not only brutal, but can also do a number on your plumbing system if you don’t take the right course of action. That’s why you should turn off all plumbing systems beforehand to prevent plumbing disasters from happening while you’re gone.
Let us first understand why shutting off your water is so essential when leaving for an extended period of time. Flood water caused by pipes bursting can lead to massive damage and inconvenience. Insulation is thus a great option when it comes to protecting your home from burst pipes.
You can get pipe insulation from the local hardware or plumbing supply store. Alternatively, people also use plumbing-specific antifreeze specifically created for plumbing systems. Pour some in the toilet bowls, tanks, sinks, and bathtubs.
With this fundamental point in mind, let’s explore seven methods to keep your plumbing system safe before leaving for winter vacation.
1. Shut off the main water valve
Leaving your main water valve on can cause flooding and water damage from a burst pipe. If this happens when you are gone, it can lead to a huge disaster. To prevent this from happening, you should shut off the main water valve before leaving for your vacation.
After shutting off the main supply, turn on all the faucets in your home to drain the water from the pipes and leave them on to allow any excess water inside the pipes to flow out.
2. Reset your thermostat
Frozen pipes will likely burst in due time, causing massive damage. If you want our advice, we recommend setting the thermostat to a minimum of 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, open all cabinets and closet doors to let warm air move inside to avoid risking burst pipes in the external walls of your home.
3. Review your sump pump
Clean up your sump pump and remove any debris to prevent clogs. Make sure your sump pump is plugged in, but remove the discharge hose as it can freeze during the winter. Keep a battery backup and an extra discharge hose handy for power outages or other emergencies.
4. Keep exterior walls sealed
Ensure that you seal all visible cracks on the exterior wall of your home and check for any potential leaks to prevent the pipes attached to those walls from bursting. Pay extra attention to cracks around doors and windows, and fix them using a sealant to prevent any cold air from getting into your home.
5. Check your appliances
If you are going on a long vacation, consider turning off individual valves to the washing machine, dishwasher, and toilets to avoid stagnation. Clean out your garbage disposal to remove food particles from the drain.
6. Ask someone to watch your home
Ask a trusted neighbour or friend to check on your property and get in touch with the local plumber about remote monitoring options for the safety of your home. Inform your close friends and family that you’ll be away, so they can keep an eye out for any trouble or step in if an emergency arises in your absence.
7. Take emergency precautions
Check all the electrical and battery-operated devices in your home, and place monitored fire alarms and smoke detectors in case there are any mishaps while you’re away. Get a licensed electrical contractor to inspect all your home wiring and outlets, and repair or replace defective equipment before you leave. Secure all the windows with insulated lining to keep out any cold air. Anchor any personal property that will remain outdoors.
Once you’re all set, finally, check the weather caulking, overall insulation, and all exterior doors and windows. Insects, as well as water, can enter through these openings. Don’t forget to clean your oven and purify, defrost, and unplug the refrigerator.
Contact the Professionals at Drain King Plumbers
It is imperative to get all your plumbing checked periodically by professional plumbers so that your pipes are unclogged and all plumbing appliances are running smoothly. That way, you can enjoy your family vacation with peace of mind, knowing your home will be just as you left it once you return. If you get a leaky pipe or an overflowing toilet, however, you should get it professionally checked before trying to repair it yourself. Reaching out for help will allow you to avoid any mishaps and get help from professionals you can trust.
For more information, please contact Drain King Plumbers, your professional plumber in Scarborough and throughout the GTA. You can also book an appointment at 833-983-5663. Visit our website here to for more details about our different drainage clearing services.