You can’t go on vacation without preparing your house, and there are some crucial home maintenance responsibilities you should take care of any time you leave your house vacant and unmonitored for a period of time. This includes dealing with the appliances, setting the thermostat, managing the water, and making it look like you’re home when you’re not.
These five steps won’t take much time out of your day, and they’ll provide you with lots of peace of mind during your time away because you’ll be able to rest easy knowing your home is in good repair.
1. What to Do with Appliances?
Because you’re away on vacation, your appliances don’t need to be plugged in, on, and ready to go. In fact, they should be the opposite—turned off, unplugged, and not using any energy.
Appliances today tend to have lights and display panels, and this means they draw energy all the time that they’re plugged in, even if they aren’t in use or turned on. Moreover, unplugging your appliances and electronics will also safeguard them from power surges and possibly even fires.
2. Reset the Thermostat
This is a big one because of how much energy and money you’ll save by turning off the climate control in your house when you’re away. There’s no reason for your home to be at the perfect temperature when you’re not in it, so reset your thermostat to allow your house to return to non-climate controlled temperatures. An ideal summer vacation thermostat will be set for 85 F, and the winter temperature should be 50 to 60 F, to ensure the pipes don’t freeze if you live in a colder climate.
3. Deal with the Water
The tip here is simple: turn it off! You won’t be using the water in your home during your vacation, so shut off the main water valve to prevent floods, leaks, and water damage.
Expert tip: Run all the taps and flush all the toilets in the house after you shut off the water so that no standing water in the pipes can leak or cause damage if there’s a problem.
4. Make it Seem Like You’re Home
Install a programmable timer for the lights so you can set certain lights to go on and off at certain times of the evening and night. You don’t want the lights blazing all day and all night because this is both a telltale sign that you’re not home and a waste of money and energy. Have the lights come on in the evening when you’d normally need them on in the kitchen and living areas, then have a few lights come on in the bedrooms at night. Have all the lights shut off around the time you normally go to bed.
5. Manage the Water Heater
Because the water won’t be running in the house, you definitely don’t need to waste the money and energy it’ll take to keep the water in the tank hot. Set the water heater to either VAC (vacation mode) or the lowest temperature setting.
Expert tip: When you get home, turn the water back on first and run hot water through the taps before turning the water heater back on. This way, the tank won’t heat up empty, which could cause damage.
Summer holidays and winter vacations are exciting times, and the last thing you need is to worry about the safety of your house while you’re away. These quick home maintenance tips won’t take long to implement, and they’ll save you plenty of time, money, and headaches in the long run.
If you need help, service, or maintenance for your appliances or plumbing systems, call the experts at Dial One Sonshine servicing the Santa Ana, CA area today at (714) 613-1016.