Preparing Your Home For Long Term travel

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Going on a long vacation? If travel is taking you far from home for an extended period of time, it's important to make sure your house is prepared for your long-term absence. Here are some tips for making sure your home stays safe from plumbing disasters, appliance mishaps and other catastrophe while you are away.

Photo of Preparing Your Home For Long Term travel 1/1 by Kelly Wilson

Set Your Thermostat

If you will be away from your house during the winter months, make sure your thermostat is set to at least 55 degrees. This will keep your house warm enough to prevent water pipes from freezing and bursting, so you don't have to come back to severe flooding and extensive water damage. If your travels take you away from home during warmer weather, you should keep your AC unit running in order to prevent mold, mildew, and other conditions caused by heat and humidity. Adjust your thermostat to 85 degrees or less to limit unnecessary usage of the air conditioning while you're gone. If you can, invest in a smart thermostat, which can be controlled via a handy smartphone app wherever you are. This is an easy, convenient way to make sure your home is always protected from weather-related plumbing and HVAC issues while you're away, as well as help you avoid the high cost of unnecessarily heating and cooling your house.

Turn Water Off

When you leave home for an extended period of time, it's a good idea to turn off your main water line. Boulder Colorado plumber Flatirons Plumbing says this is the simplest way to keep from having a problem. This can prevent plumbing leaks from occurring in your absence- leaks which can result in significant water damage and substantial repairs. After shutting off the main water valve, let your kitchen and bathroom faucets run dry to ensure that no water is left sitting in the pipes.

However, there are some exceptions. If your sprinkler system needs to run while you are out of town, or if your heating system works with steam radiators or hot water, you should not shut your water off at the main valve. However, anyone who doesn't have these special circumstances should turn it off to avoid future problems upon your return. By turning off the water before you leave, you may be saving yourself from a potentially bad situation upon your return.

Wrap Toilet Bowls With Plastic Wrap

This may sound like an elaborate prank for your family and friends, but it can actually help you avoid a stinky surprise when you get home from your travels! By wrapping your toilet bowls, you are preventing sewer fumes from entering your home while you're away on your trip. Leaving your toilets unwrapped can result in a "welcome home" that is memorable...in the bad way! Just remember to mark the cling wrap with a big black "X" or other warning symbol to prevent anyone from accidentally using the toilet with the wrap in place.

Empty the Fridge

Apart from the main reason of not wanting the food in your refrigerator to turn into a moldy, furry science experiment while you're on the road, it's also a smart idea to completely defrost and unplug the fridge if you're going to be gone for a very long time. This will save energy and not force the refrigerator to keep running when not in use.

Travel is a wonderful way to broaden your horizons and have exciting adventures that stay with you forever! By knowing how to properly take care of your home when you are on an extended trip, you can have one less thing to worry about while you are away from home having adventures. Next time you take an extended trip, follow these tips in order to ensure a happy homecoming.

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