The winter holidays can be a welcome break to spend quality time with the family. However, this means that you will lock up your homes over the long winter months. Whether it’s a few days away or a few weeks, make sure you’re not coming back to a flooded basement or a frozen dishwasher. With freezing temperatures outside and no human life inside, it can be a challenge to maintain the house until your return. Here are a few solutions to avoid creating any expensive damage.
Keep the boiler on
Freezing homes are the number one problem that people encounter after returning from a winter getaway. It’s important to keep your house from freezing by keeping your boiler on, or at the frost setting if the boiler has the feature. If, however, you are concerned about energy and bills, set a timer for the boiler to turn on for a couple of hours every day. It will efficiently prevent freezing in the tank as well as in the pipes.
Keep the thermostat running
The thermostat should be kept on at a low setting, preferably around 12 degrees. This, of course, is not warm enough for you living in the house but will be enough to keep appliances and the entire house from freezing. The alternative is to set a timer to switch on the thermostat as the temperature falls below a certain degree.
Turn off the water from the mains
Frozen water and burst pipes in winter is an expensive issue. If you’re going to be away for a while, you might want to consider turning off the water at the main supply. You can then flush the toilet to drain all the remaining water from the pipes.
Close all the windows and curtains
It may sound obvious, but when you are in a frenzied hurry to get away, you can easily overlook this. Open windows or cracks in the windows can be a significant source of grief when it is snowing and freezing outside. Snow getting lodged in between the frames and the window sill can be a mess to deal with after they thaw. Closed curtains will also aid in keeping the heat out of the house – just be sensible about how many you close as not to make it obvious you’re away for a long time.
Keep the cupboard and cabinets open
In many houses, the plumbing runs behind the cabinets where it is easy to conceal them. Keeping them open can help circulate the warm air from the water that runs through the pipes to colder areas in the house.
Read the contract terms
This thought may be the furthest thing from your mind, but it pays to check the terms stipulated in your contract. The worst thing you want after returning is to get sued by the landlord because you failed to comply with the conditions in the tenancy contract.
Inform the landlord
If you live in private student accommodation, it is always wise to inform your landlord about the period that the house will remain unoccupied. This way they can keep an eye on your house while you enjoy your holidays without any stress.