There are times that plumbing and electrical problems in your home can do more damage than an intruder breaking in. Here are some tips on what you can do to for home safety while you are away.
Water damage from undected plumbing leaks can quickly ruin ceilings, floors and walls ending up in huge repair bills. So turn off the water at the mains. Also the ice maker in your refridgerator may freeze up while you are gone so you can either shut it off or leave it on and use a hair dryer to thaw out should it freeze up while you are away.
Likewise gas leaks can be an major issue so switch off gas supply at source and if you have multiple tanks then turn each one off.
Computer chips are sensitive and highly vulnerable to momentary power surges. Losing an expensive computer is quite distressing, but losing photos, music and other irreplaceable stuff on your hard drive is often much worse. Insulate your valuable devices from this danger by plugging them into a surge protector.
The most common time for a sump pump to fail is the first heavy rainfall after months of not being used. The submerged or partially submerged portions of cast iron pumps can rust and seize. And they'll burn out when they switch on. Don't get caught with your pump down and the water rising. After a long dry (unused) spell, pour a bucket or two of water into the sump to make sure the pump kicks on.
Hairline cracks in a concrete foundation are normal, but cracks that continue to widen spell trouble. They'll eventually cause shifting and cracking in the walls above, tilt floors and move doors and windows so they won't open and close. The movement is quite slow so it's best to measure and record the gap size every few months. If the cracks continue to widen then you need to call in a contrtactor/foundation specialist. Bear in mind that solutions may be quite costly but the cost of ignoring the problem is greater.
Pay all your bills before going on vacation. This ensures that you phone roams while away so you are contactable and there will be no disconnections while you are gone so you can have the electricity and water working well for a hassle-free return back home!