The one thing that can totally ruin a lovely vacation is a home plumbing problem or outright emergency while you are away. With that in mind, take advantage of this plumbing pre-vacation checklist before your next trip.

  1. Turn off the main water valve into the house. This is a great start to avoiding plumbing accidents. The super-cautious homeowners turn off the valves to the dishwasher, washing machine, and under sinks and toilets as well. It’s a good idea!
  2. Shut off entirely and drain the lawn sprinkler system unless it’s summer and you intend to water the yard while you are away. This will prevent even small leaks.
  3. Check the gutters to make sure they’re not blocked with leaves or other debris. Even in a heavy rain, these clean and clear gutters will carry water away from the house and avoid flooding around the foundation.
  4. If you have a sump pump in your basement, make absolutely sure it’s working. Test it by adding enough water into the pit to make sure the pump turns on and adequately expels water.
  5. Drain the empty dishwasher and washing machine to help prevent mold, mildew, and unpleasant smells. Leave the doors open to air. Don’t forget to empty, clean, and drain the garbage disposal as well.
  6. Adjust the water heater. Either set it at its lowest temperature setting or turn it off completely.
  7. It’s a smart idea to use one of the many environmentally friendly drainage products on kitchen and bathroom drains. Again, this will help prevent mold, mildew, and unpleasant smells from building up while you are gone.
  8. If you have a swimming pool, run the pool pump at its optimal setting while you are gone to avoid algae build-up.
  9. Drain all exterior faucets and disconnect all hoses.
  10.  Have someone check in on your house while you are away and provide them with contact information for your plumber in case of an emergency.
  11. Have a wonderful, worry-free vacation!”
SoCal Plumbers