The first thing every homeowner needs to know about plumbing is how to turn the water off in case of an emergency. It’s like having a fire extinguisher; you hope you never need it but you want it just in case you do.
Generally, the cutoff is in the front of the home. There may be a separate cutoff box on the owner’s side of the meter. If not, the owner needs to be able to open the water meter and turn it off there. This will require a water meter key which can be found at a local home improvement store and a wrench. Once you have the key, practice opening the meter door and check out how the shutoff valve works. Then, put the key in a quick and easy place to find when you need it.
The second thing a homeowner needs is a recommendation of two good plumbers. Having a backup name is always good in case your first choice can’t make it when you need them.
Some homeowners prefer to go the do-it-yourself route. There are plenty of DIY videos on the Internet but having the name of a good plumber if the job gets out of hand can be the tool that saves the day. Regardless of whether you “do it or delegate it”, being familiar with the basics can be very helpful.
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It’s true that every homeowner should know how to shut off the water for their home. Water damage can be expensive to repair and treat to ensure that you don’t get mold or mildew growth. It can also make the plumber’s job easier since they won’t have to work in flooded or soiled conditions. Be sure to know where the emergency shut of is for your home’s water, electricity, and gas.
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