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Old 05-18-2014, 10:52 PM   #15
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Never even thought about it, but I'm only gone for a 3-4 day weekend.
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Old 05-19-2014, 07:29 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by djbmsu View Post
Beyond the silly bacteria issue, would be the potential for a broken Water heater, or water pipe when no one is home !

PERZACTLY!!!
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Old 05-19-2014, 08:03 AM   #17
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I turn off the power to my WH (mine is electric) if we will be gone even a day or so. If we are going to be away for more than a day or so, I also turn off the water to the house. Last year we were gone for a month and someone had turned on a faucet outside the house. My water bill that month was $346.00! Lesson learned, the hard way!
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Old 05-19-2014, 08:34 AM   #18
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When we departed our central Missouri home in January, we turned the water off in the crawl space under the house and at the meter, to protect the out buildings. I drained the home system as best as I could from the low point in the crawl space and then turned the water heater off at the breaker.

After we had been gone for a couple of weeks, my son checked the house and found that the ground loop heating/cooling system was not heating. The inside temperature was the same as outside ambient, which at that time was 50 degrees. They had just experienced -15 degree weather with temperatures remaining below zero for several days. I was able to get the heat pump restored within 24 hours, but I was unsure of what I would find upon my return in early May. Luckily, when we turned the pressure back on, there was no damage. I think my draining the system helped insure that some vulnerable lines did not freeze. We dodged that bullet.

I will always turn off the water in the house and drain all the lines possible when we leave for an extended time.

For what is is worth, we have a warning system that calls several phone numbers if the home temperature falls below a preset level. The sensor is battery powered and that battery was a bad one. It worked when we left!
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Old 05-19-2014, 11:23 AM   #19
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We are never gone for more than a week or two, but we don't turn off the water heater. We like to live on the edge.
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Old 05-19-2014, 11:32 AM   #20
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The house we are having built has a tankless water heater.
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Old 05-19-2014, 12:04 PM   #21
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Hot Water Heater, that's funny, yes it's actually a cold water heater.
Other terms we all use, but it's just habit:
Dial the phone..... Who has a dial on their phone?
Roll down the car window..... Most have electric windows, no "rolling" involved
So in so has a new record out..... No, so in so has a new CD or MP3 out.
I'm guilty of all the above.

For me, I turn the cold water heater thermostat to pilot only, leave the water on. Never given much thought to turning off the house water supply.... Something else to add to the away list.


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Old 05-19-2014, 12:52 PM   #22
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Our water heater has a "Vacation" setting which seems to be be the same as "Pilot". We set it to the vacation mode when we leave for the winter. We turn the heater inlet water valve off. We were told we have to leave the house water on because we have hot water heat. We leave the temp set at 50 degrees. We have a GE wireless security system with freeze, motion, door/window, and flood sensors. The system notifies the monitoring company if any of them operate. There is a built in battery supply that will run the system for 24 hours. We get an email if the power goes out and one when it comes back on. If it stays off longer than 12 hours the company calls us.
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Old 05-19-2014, 12:54 PM   #23
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I turn off my water and my water heater. My water heater has a pilot light and I see no reason to waist natural gas for an extended period of time. It seems to me that bacteria is more likely to grow in warm water (low setting) than cold.
That's what I've do over the lat 15 winters, (for the same reasons).
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Old 05-19-2014, 06:57 PM   #24
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We ALWAYS turn off the water in the house when we travel. We also open all the taps to allow the water to drain to the lowest point in the house (basement). We have a natural gas HWH and set it to "Pilot" as turning it off requires relighting when we return and likely replacement of the thermocouple (learned through experience). We have a Honeywell heating/cooling thermostat that can be adjusted over the internet allowing us to lower temperatures in the winter and restore heating or AC before we return home. It can also be set (through the internet portal) to send email alerts when house temperatures go above or below defined thresholds. In our area, most home insurance claims are related to water damages so it is prudent to mitigate the opportunity where possible.
So, Bob, you turn off the water to the house and drain it but leave your pilot on? Do you drain your tank too?
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Old 05-19-2014, 07:36 PM   #25
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I don't drain the tank - it is in the basement - just open the taps in the basement so that most of the system drains by gravity. I think draining the tank could do more harm than good. Have done this for many years with no issues.
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Old 05-22-2014, 01:57 AM   #26
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Very rare but one hell of a mess if it happens. There are all those toilet supply lines and water lines for the ice maker, washing machine, dish washer that all have the potential of making for a bad day.
For me, I enjoy the peace of mind so that I don't have an OS moment upon returning home !!
How does that go....... An ounce of prevention......... You get the idea :-)
TELL ME ABOUT IT !!! It just happened a few months ago at my house (not my Motorhome). Toilet hose snapped and flooded my entire house. This is a small 1500' house with metal walls and it still cost me over $40,000 in damages!!

Now a days if I'm going to be gone overnight or more I shut off all water to the house and open at least one faucet to relieve pressure. It takes all of 30 seconds and I leave with one less worry.
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Old 05-22-2014, 05:46 AM   #27
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TELL ME ABOUT IT !!! It just happened a few months ago at my house (not my Motorhome). Toilet hose snapped and flooded my entire house. This is a small 1500' house with metal walls and it still cost me over $40,000 in damages!!

Now a days if I'm going to be gone overnight or more I shut off all water to the house and open at least one faucet to relieve pressure. It takes all of 30 seconds and I leave with one less worry.

Yup, that's how I figured it out . I was standing in my kitchen when I heard a strange noise and saw water coming out from under the Refrigerator . The plastic supply line broke. Every other supply line has a woven metal shell including the Washing machine. I had never thought about the ice maker, but fortunately I was standing right there when it broke .
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:02 AM   #28
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Well for what its worth for 40+ years when I leave for any length of time, 2 weeks or 2 months, I turn the water and hot water heater off. Winter or summer dosn't matter and I never had a problem.
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