How to Get Your House Ready When Going on Vacation

TravelAre you planning a vacation this season? Going away for an extended period? Somewhere between arranging a pet-sitter and packing your swimsuits and sunblock, there are several home maintenance steps you should take to prepare your home for when you go away.

Make sure the following steps are added to your going-away-checklist to ensure your home is protected against plumbing emergencies and to give yourself peace of mind when you are away:

Step 1: Clean the Garbage Disposal

Nothing is worse than coming home from a relaxing vacation to find a pungent smell coming from somewhere in the kitchen. A dirty garbage disposal left on its own for a few weeks runs the risk of growing mold, rotting food and creating a gross mess in your sink. One of the fastest and easiest ways to clean the disposal is by letting it run while pouring warm water and a little bit of white vinegar down the drain too quickly clean the blades and ensure you won’t come home to an awful smell.

Step 2: Turn off the Water Valve

Making sure the main water valve is turned off will prevent any accidental water damage from occurring in your home from burst pipes, water leaks or other issues that may arise. Turning off the water will also save you money if you have a dripping faucet. It may seem like a small step to take, but if it helps with home maintenance, prevents damage and saves money while you’re gone, why not take a couple of extra minutes to do it.

Step 3: Disconnect Appliancesdisconnect-appliances

Depending on how long you will be away for, it’s also probably worth it to disconnect your appliances. Smaller appliances such as your microwave or toaster can be easily disconnected, but it’s also a good idea to unplug your stove, oven and even your refrigerator if you are going to be gone for an extended period. If you disconnect your fridge or freezer, make sure they are empty so that no food will go bad.

Step 4: Set your Water Heater to Vacation Mode

Gas-powered water heaters usually have a setting on them called “vacation mode.” This mode turns down the heat on your water heater and uses a more efficient setting to conserve energy while the water heater is not in use. Newer water heaters allow homeowners to program the vacation mode settings. How it usually works is that the water heater will lie idle while you are gone and then turn back on the day before you return so that hot water is available on the day you programmed vacation mode to end.

For water heaters that do not have this feature, only turn down the thermostat to the lowest setting or turn the water heater off completely. You simply need to remember to turn it back on when you return.

For help with your home maintenance vacation checklist, call the team at Georgia Plumbing Experts in Cartersville, GA. Our licensed technicians can help keep your home safe. Call 770-744-0210 for more information today.