How to Protect Your Home While Traveling This Summer

Travel with peace of mind while you are away with these steps to safeguard your home and avoid costly water damage or restoration.

How to Protect Your Home While Traveling This Summer
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Beagle Services
June 5, 2023

Summer has arrived and with it, for many of us, comes more flexibility, time, and the opportunity to take that well-deserved vacation that may (excitingly!) require traveling away from home! Before you leave, consider taking steps to prepare your home for a safe return.

As your trusted water security partner, we put this list together to help you enjoy peace of mind by taking proactive measures to protect your home. You can trust Beagle Services to install a smart water security system such as an automatic water shutoff valve and/or smart water sensors that allows for real-time flow-based sensor reading and alerts to leak or plumbing-related issues sent directly to your smartphone; automatic shutoff valves can automatically turn off the water to your home upon detecting a critical alert like a burst pipe. Additionally, Watchdog by Beagle can monitor your system for you while you're away, 24/7, to help you get trusted service in the event of a leak or water loss event.

10 Ways To Help Prevent Water Damage While You Are Away

One of the most significant risks to your property is water damage, which can lead to costly repairs and extensive inconvenience. In this blog post, we will explore various measures you can take to safeguard your home from water damage, with a special focus on the automatic water shutoff valve—a valuable addition to your defense strategy.

  1. Inspect and Repair:
    Before you set off on your summer travels, conduct a thorough inspection of your home for any leaks. Check faucets, toilets, water supply lines, and appliances, and promptly repair any signs of leaks or drips. Taking care of these issues beforehand will significantly reduce the chances of water damage occurring in your absence.
  2. Clean Gutters and Downspouts:
    Ensure your gutters and downspouts are free from debris and properly functioning. By removing leaves, twigs, and other obstructions, you allow water to flow freely away from your home, minimizing the risk of overflow and potential water damage.
  3. Shut Off the Main Water Supply:
    Locate the main water shut-off valve in your home and turn it off before leaving. This simple step can prevent any water flow to your plumbing system, effectively eliminating the possibility of leaks or burst pipes while you're away. Be sure to test the shut-off valve before your departure to ensure it functions correctly.
  4. Drain and Insulate Pipes:
    If you live in an area prone to freezing temperatures, it's crucial to protect your pipes from potential freezing and bursting from increase of pressure. Before leaving, drain any remaining water from outdoor pipes, sprinkler systems, and hoses. Additionally, insulate exposed pipes with foam sleeves or insulation tape. This will help maintain a stable temperature and reduce the risk of frozen pipes during colder weather.
  5. Set Up a Sump Pump and Backup System:
    If your home has a basement or is located in a flood-prone area, installing a sump pump is crucial. This device helps remove water that accumulates in the basement, preventing flooding and subsequent water damage. Additionally, consider installing a backup sump pump or a battery-powered water alarm to provide extra protection in case of power outages.
  6. Consider an Automatic Water Shutoff Valve:
    Installing an automatic water shutoff valve is an excellent investment in protecting your home from water damage. This innovative device monitors the water flow in your plumbing system and automatically shuts off the water supply if it detects abnormal activity, such as a burst pipe or significant leak. It provides an additional layer of protection and peace of mind, even if you've already shut off the main water supply. Our team of smart water security experts specialize in not only helping customers identify a type that works for them but also installing them and monitoring them 24/7 through Watchdog.
  7. Smart Water Leak Detectors (sensors):
    Utilize smart water leak detectors (sensors) to monitor your home for any signs of water damage. These devices can alert you via smartphone notifications if a leak is detected, allowing you to take swift action or contact someone to address the issue promptly. Smart leak detectors offer an added layer of security and can help mitigate potential water damage while you're away. Smart water sensors are placed in areas of the home that may be particularly vulnerable to water loss or damage including near drains, appliances, as well as areas of the homes like basements or attics.
  8. Consider a Home Monitoring System:
    A comprehensive home monitoring system can provide you with added security and peace of mind while you're traveling. These systems often include water leak sensors, surveillance cameras, and remote access to control various aspects of your home. Some systems even allow you to remotely shut off the main water supply in case of an emergency. Explore different options available and choose a system that suits your needs and budget. If you are looking for a monitored security alarm compatible with smart water devices like Phyn or Flo by Moen, Watchdog by Beagle Services is a monitored alarm system available now.
  9. Set Your Thermostat:
    Maintaining an appropriate indoor temperature is vital in preventing water damage. Set your thermostat to a temperature that will keep the interior of your home above freezing, especially during winter months. This will help prevent frozen pipes and potential water leaks or pipe bursts. Additionally, adjusting the thermostat to a slightly higher temperature can help control humidity levels, minimizing the risk of mold growth. Smart water sensors detect changes in temperature and humidity, acting as environmental sensors in addition to leak detection sensors.
  10. Unplug and Turn Off Appliances:
    Before leaving, unplug non-essential appliances and turn off the water supply to appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers, and ice makers. This precautionary measure reduces the chances of malfunctions or leaks while you're away. Additionally, it saves energy and lowers the risk of electrical fires.
  11. Inform Trusted Neighbors or Friends:
    Before leaving for your trip, inform trusted neighbors or friends about your travel plans. Share your contact information with them and ask if they can keep an eye on your property. Request that they periodically check for any signs of water damage, ensuring that any issues are promptly addressed to prevent further damage. You never have to warn Beagle Services that you are going out of town if we are monitoring your system for you through Watchdog; Watchdog is always on guard, 24/7.
  12. Notify Your Insurance Company:
    Inform your home insurance company about your travel plans and the precautions you've taken to prevent water damage. They may provide additional guidance or suggest specific measures to protect your home. It's also essential to review your insurance policy and understand the coverage for water damage in case of an unforeseen event. Take the time to review your homeowner's insurance policy and verify that it covers water damage and other related risks. Familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions, ensuring you understand the coverage provided. If necessary, consider adding additional coverage for peace of mind while you're away.

Preventing water damage to your home while traveling requires proactive measures and careful planning. Inspecting and maintaining your plumbing system, shutting off the main water supply, draining and insulating pipes, setting your thermostat appropriately, and unplugging appliances are all essential steps to take. Additionally, installing water leak detection devices, enlisting the help of a neighbor or friend, and considering a home monitoring system can provide added protection and peace of mind. Beagle Services specializes in installing these systems and monitoring them for homeowners. By implementing preventive measures, you can enjoy your trip knowing that your home is safeguarded against potential water damage.

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Beagle Services

Beagle is your trusted water security partner.
We are experts in water monitoring and leak detection technology that is rapidly expanding through private and governmental incentives.