Should You Turn Off Water When You’re on Vacation?


Turn off water when on vacation

Whether it is a weekend away to a sunny island or a month spent backpacking in Europe, the last thing you want to be worrying about while you’re on vacation is how your home is doing. Sure, plenty of people leave their homes and arrive back to find it exactly how they left it. But some return to find they had a plumbing leak that went unchecked. So, should you turn off the water when you’re on vacation? The short answer is yes.

Plumbing Leaks When Youre Not Home

The worry is, that if you leave your water on, your home could suffer a leak while you’re gone. In that case, no one will notice to turn the water off. The leak will run unchecked, which could mean you arrive home to a house that has major water damage, even flooding.

What If I Dont Want to Turn the Water Off?

Alternatively, you could always get a house sitter to watch your property when you’re not around. In fact, if you have pets or plants that you have someone coming by to take care of, you shouldn’t turn off the water because they may need to use it. But be sure to ask them to pop their head into the basement and other rooms in the home to look and listen for leaks. The best defence against leaks and flooding is proactively looking out for them.

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What About the Tankless Water Heater? 

Should you turn off your tankless water heater when on vacation? That depends, if you’re turning off the water main for your home, the tankless heater won’t leak. It may waste a bit of money by staying on. But ask yourself if you also unplug electronics when you leave for vacation as they use a bit of energy when plugged into the wall as well. In any case, you have to turn everything back on, so it just depends on what kind of energy saving is worth it to you while you are away.

What About My Boiler?

Can you turn off the water but leave the boiler on? It depends on what your boiler’s role is. We don’t recommend it if your boiler heats your home, as leaving your home cold while you’re on vacation is not a good thing—especially not during the winter. They won’t be able to leak forever, but there are small amounts of water in the pipe still, which can freeze and harm the pipes.

If all your boiler does is produce hot water, then yes, you could turn the boiler off while you’re gone. However, you’d also want to flush out the water to prevent the growth of bacteria in the tank, and that is kind of a hassle.

Do you have other plumbing questions? The team at Guest Plumbing and HVAC can help answer them and even help prepare your home for your vacation. Reach out to us today.


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