Ready to finally take that extended vacation this summer? Since it may be a while since you last traveled, here are a few helpful reminders to help prepare your home against mishaps while you are away.
Set Your Thermostat
If you have an AC, heat pump, or evaporative cooling unit, leave it on to prevent mold, mildew, and other conditions caused by heat and humidity. Adjusting your thermostat up to 4 degrees higher than normal reduces energy use while still having the unit run periodically. If feasible, invest in a smart thermostat. This will allow you to monitor and control conditions at home via an app on your phone.
Turn Water Off
When you are going to be away for an extended period, it’s a good idea to turn off your main water line. This can prevent plumbing leaks from occurring in your absence — which otherwise could result in significant water damage and costly repairs. After shutting off the main water valve, let your kitchen and bathroom faucets run dry, ensuring that water is not left in the pipes.
If shutting the water off isn’t an option due to sprinklers or other circumstances, consider investing in some water leak detection sensors. Modern water detectors connect to your smartphone and will notify you if a leak is detected. And since kits start at around $40, they can be a smart investment whether you’re traveling or not.
Empty the Fridge, Take Out the Trash
No one wants to come home to a moldy, stinky science experiment in their fridge! So make sure to dump anything perishable from the refrigerator and take the garbage out.
Double Down on Smart Security
As with water sensors and smart thermostats, other smart security devices are now more affordable than ever. To give the appearance that someone is home, use smart plugs to toggle lights, fans, or a radio while you’re away. Also consider a smart security system. Modern systems feature contract-free, affordable monitoring, quick DIY installation, and remote monitoring notifications.