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Two kids use an upside down kitchen table as a raft in their flooded kitchen.

Proactive Plumbing Tips to Follow Before Leaving on Vacation

Avoid Flooding & Water Damage by Prepping Your Plumbing

At Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Pomona Valley, we understand that it can be hard to prioritize plumbing while juggling vacation plans, reservations, packing, scheduling arrangements, pet sitters, and fun activities for your next getaway. However, don’t forget to safeguard your plumbing before leaving town! Failing to prep your plumbing system can make the return home much more unwelcoming – greeting you with ruined flooring, a flooded basement, soggy ceiling, or expensive water damage.

The following tips can help prevent any plumbing mishaps while you're away!

Shut Off the Main Water Supply

The simplest task you can take to prevent flooding and water damage is to turn off the main water supply. Turning off the main water supply is the surefire solution for ensuring a single leak, faulty pipe, broken washer hose, or broken water line doesn’t prove destructive. Run all your faucets and disconnect hoses to remove all the water once you’ve turned off the main line.

We understand turning off the main supply line might not be feasible if you want to keep your sprinkler system, pool pump, or any other water-operated appliance running while out of town. In this case, we recommend turning off the water at each fixture to minimize flooding should an emergency occur. We also recommend turning off any automatic icemakers to ensure no complications arise during your absence.

Adjust Water Heater Temperature

We recommend trying to schedule a professional water heater tune-up or maintenance before leaving on vacation. Our licensed plumbers can check for corrosion, leaks, sediment buildup, and more. We can also drain your water heater if necessary. You can also set it to “vacation” mode – regardless of whether you find time for maintenance.

Your gas or electric water heater likely consumes more energy than most household appliances. Turning it off will eliminate your chances of flooding and help you save money on monthly utility bills. For gas water heaters, turn the temperature as low as it goes without turning the pilot light off. For electric models, there should be an easy switch that you can flip off. You can also turn an electric water heater off at the breaker panel.

Clean Your Drains, Toilets, Sinks, & Garbage Disposal

A minor clog or gunk in your drains may attract bugs, bacteria growth, mildew, mold, cockroaches, and other issues while you’re away due to a lack of water running through them. A great way to avoid such scenarios is to give your drains a deep cleaning. Another cool tip is to run ice cubes and water through your garbage disposal to dispel and wash away food particles.

Of course, you’ll also want to empty and wash the interior of your dishwasher and washing machine to prevent mold and unpleasant odors. Finally, cleaning your toilet is never a bad idea before heading out for any period. The minerals in hard water can lead to discoloration, low toilet flush pressure, and clogs if left untreated for an extended time. Cleaning your toilet will help prevent mineral buildup before it causes problems. Call us anytime to ask about us for recommendations on special disposal cleaners and other plumbing products and tips.

Test the Sump Pump

Always inspect your sump pump (if you own one) to verify it is ready if needed. You can assess a sump pump by filling it with water until it kicks on. You might need to call a professional plumbing specialist if you continue to pour water without any sign of activity. After all, a sump pump will be your final defense in the case of any emergency flooding. And while you can failproof your water line from flood risks, there is no way to predict or alter the weather. Troubleshooting your sump pump can help you prepare for the possibility that a major hurricane, torrential downpour, or another storm event might flood your property while you are away.

Check Irrigation and Sprinkler Systems

Finally, we highly advise all homeowners to assess any irrigation or sprinkler system parts before heading out of town. We understand that you might want to leave your external water line running to ensure your landscape and vegetation remains hydrated and happy. You can still check that the programming schedule is properly set and even install special timers to optimize water usage and reduce the likelihood of water waste.

Don’t Let Plumbing Take the Backburner

At Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Pomona Valley, we realize that the last thing you want to return home to after a rejuvenating getaway is an inundated home. Save your home from expensive water bills, damaged infrastructure, and mold growth by preparing for the worst while you’re away.

Want more information on how to protect your plumbing system while on vacation? Call (909) 303-6251 for a complimentary consultation today!