Let’s say you’re in the middle of dinner…. suddenly you hear the sound of running water coming form upstairs… but everyone is at the dinner table…. what could it be? You run upstairs to investigate only to find water a water puddle in the hall, the carpet is wall and carpet is soaked. Did someone leave the bathtub on and its overflowing? No. Is the sink on? No. It seems that the water is coming from the wall! What do you do? Gotta shut that water off. Where’s the valve? It’s in the garage! Oh man, now you have to move the stacked up boxes of Christmas ornaments, after you get past the toys and bikes. It only took five minutes, that won’t be that bad right? Wrong, that could have put about 500 gallons of water in your home. Thats right, a 3/4 inch water pipe from your local municipality moves 110 gallons of water per minute. A 1/2 inch pipe is only about 50 gallons per minute, but after only 5 minutes, 250 gallons of water on you floor, in your home…. that’s a lot of water!
Water shut-off locations in or near your home are important to be aware of! In the event of an emergency, the last thing you want to do is be searching for it.
Each home can be a little bit different as to the location. Your home might have an easy to locate valve with a label or you might have to use the water meter valve.
Whatever the case, make sure you have this identified and accessible. A lot of times, I find them in the garage along the side wall or back wall. In older homes, they are often found under the kitchen sink or in a hall closet.
Sometimes they were installed in a crawlspace or not at all, and the best thing to do is shut off at the meter valve. In order to shut off at the meter, its best to use the Tee handle wrench. It can be difficult trying to reach in the meter housing with a channel lock plier or adjustable wrench, where damage is a risk! By using the proper tool, shutoff can be achieved easily and quickly!
For those in the garage or closet, make keep the area clear so you can get to it without having to remove a lot of items. This could be the difference between a little water on the floor and major flooding damage inside the home.
If you get your home inspection done with A Premier Home Inspection, look for the shutoff location labeled in your inspection report! Then take the necessary steps to be ready if the need ever arises. If you’re having trouble locating the shutoff, give me a call and I could drop by as courtesy when I’m in your area!