Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Snowbirds: how to leave home
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CarnationSailor

Carnation,WA

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Posted: 12/04/18 10:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The above posts pretty much cover what I do. In addition, I put the Comcast Triple Play services on vacation hold. Saves about $400 over the 3 months we are gone. Also, stop garbage service for additional savings.

Forward landline to cell.


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Captain_Happy

Pahrump, Nevada

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Posted: 12/05/18 06:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've got an even better idea. Sell the dam house and go enjoy life for once.

jplante4

Cape Cod

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Posted: 12/05/18 07:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Boy, if I had to do all that alarming and securing, I'd sell the place and move. Also, any internet enabled security system requires you to leave your internet on. That's an expense you really don't need.

Turn off the water and set the heat to 50 or 60 if you have a newer high-efficiency furnace. Water heater off (vacation mode still burns gas).

If you have forced hot water heat, you will need to provide makeup water to the boiler. Most people have a separate line for the boiler that allows you to isolate the rest of the house. Route any P/T valve overflows for a sump with a pump.


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spud1957

NB

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Posted: 12/05/18 07:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Call your insurance company and confirm what your obligations are. Do not just rely on posts from strangers on a forum.

If your policy states you are to have someone check on your house and/or have a 24 hour monitored alarm service, and you do not, they have every right to deny certain claims (water) while you are away.

This is clearly stated in my policy (Co-operators).

bobsallyh

Livingston, TX.

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Posted: 12/05/18 08:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Absolutely turn off the water! Then turn off the energy source for the water heater. If electric, kick the breaker, if gas, turn off the pilot light. If you have a driveway, make sure newspapers, or anything dropped off doesn't sit there for a long time. If somebody is going to be checking the inside, have them bring along several buckets of water to flush the pottys' with.

DutchmenSport

Indiana

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Posted: 12/05/18 08:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If the house is going to be unoccupied, at a bare minimum, winterize the water system by draining the water heater and blowing out the lines in the house with an air compressor, just like you'd do on your RV. Turning the heat off completely, especially in snow states, is not good for the walls in your house. My mother went to Texas one year over the winter and I policed her house. We agreed to keep the furnace (hot water system) set to 40 degrees where it stayed for about 4 months. This kept any pipes from freezing, yes. But once she returned home, raised the heat back up, and then Summer came around, she had several rooms in the house on the outside walls that started flaking paint. The house was built in the 1940's, so the walls were real plaster, not plaster board. It was the first time ever anything like that ever happened.

However, if you are going full timing ... best advise is ... sell the house and then you have no worries any more about anything and you'll really be free to enjoy your new-found lifestyle.

DougE

New Braunfels, Texas USA

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Posted: 12/05/18 09:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you shut off water to the house and open the interior taps the pipes are unlikely to burst. The water pipes in the exterior walls will get to roughly 1/2 the temperature difference between the interior and exterior. I.e. If its 0* outside and 60* inside the pipe temperature will be ~30*. Draining through the exterior hose bibs will probably get the water in the pipes to the lowest level. (Put an insulating cap on them also.)
If you have a programable thermostat you can raise the interior temperature of the house another 10* between 4:00 and 6:00 am.
It's best to cut off the power source to the water heater, whether gas or electric.
Anything you can do to add insulation to your windows will do wonders for your fuel bill. (For long term non-occupancy I'd cut something like foam board to fit the opening.)
If it gets cold enough for long enough even insulated pipes will freeze!


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almcc

Ontario, Canada

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Posted: 12/05/18 09:25am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For peace of mind, we have a smart thermostat and subscribe to a service where I can look at/reset the thermostat and what the temp is doing minute by minute, and it will email me and our house checker if the house temp drops 2 degrees below set point.





Fizz

Ottawa, Canada

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Posted: 12/05/18 11:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Brother in law did everything right, turn off the water etc.
Neighbor comes in to do a check and finds water all over.
The tank on the brand new toilet cracked and dumped its 5 gal of water. Could have been much worse.

phillyg

SWFL

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Posted: 12/05/18 04:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Down here in Fl when my snowbird neighbors go back north or to Europe, they get pool and lawn services started, leave the AC set on 80 degrees, turn off the water, and arrange with a neighbor (or hire someone) to check the house on a regular schedule.


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