Clients call us all the time in a panic; they have water pouring out of the ceiling or a broken toilet shutoff valve and don’t know how to stop the water. (This happens a lot more than you think…)
The simple answer: Any adult, or teenager you trust, should know where the whole house water shut off is, they should also know how to use that shut off to turn off all the incoming water to the building.
What’s a whole house water shut off?
Unfortunately most of our clients don’t know what a whole house shut off is, much less where it was located or how to use it. The whole house shut off is like a “master switch” for your incoming water. In some situations (like the ones noted above) that shut off is the ONLY way you have to stop the water from invading your home. (The city can come over and shut it off from the outside…but imagine waiting for them while water is pouring out of your ceiling) Every minute counts when you have water pouring into your home; a properly functioning whole house shut off can stop the flow quickly. NOTE: Most water shut offs are rarely if ever used once the home/building is occupied, in our experience most of them are seized up from lack of use.
Doing this today can save you a big headache tomorrow:
1. Learn where the whole house water shut off valve is located!! (PLEASE DO THIS TODAY)
2. Be sure the shut off valve is working. (If it seems stuck or seized, be careful you may need a plumber to get it working again. Remember if it breaks and starts leaking only the city can help shut off your water…)
3. Label the shut off valve with one of our free valve tags. (Now anyone who can read knows what that valve is for)
4. Show & teach everyone in the house where the shut off valve is and how and when to use it. (Tell teenagers it’s not a toy)
That’s all it takes to prevent a small water leak from turning into a massive insurance headache…