Before you go on a trip, make sure you do these things to keep your home safe:
Shut Down Your Hot Water Heater
If you have a traditional tank water heater that runs on electricity or natural gas, it’s likely to be among the highest energy consuming appliances in your home. But you might not realize this if you’ve never shut your water heater down for a week, and come home to significantly lower utility bills.
As long as there’s no risk of freezing, there’s nothing wrong with shutting off your water heater for a few days. You can either use the main shutoff handle on your water heater itself, or shut it off at your main circuit panel if that’s more accessible. Some water heaters have a “vacation” setting on the temperature control dial. Alternatively, you can just turn the temperature dial to its lowest setting.
If you’re making this part of your vacation routine for the first time, leave yourself a note to turn the power back on as soon as you get home. It will take a little while to heat up a full tank of cool water.
Shut Off Your Water Supply
When it comes to home repair headaches, broken plumbing pipes are especially costly because of the huge mess they create. If you’re not home to notice the deluge and take action, you might suffer catastrophic property damage. But if you completely shut off the water supply to your home, you can prevent plumbing-related water damage altogether.
If you don’t know exactly where your main shut-off valve is, you should locate it today. Because even if you’re at home when a pipe breaks, the best way to minimize damage is to go directly to the valve and shut off the flow of water at the source.

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