Long vacation preperations

Old 01-06-17, 06:43 PM
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Long vacation preperations

Hi, We need to go out of state for about 3-4 weeks during peak winter (North East -- harsh winter).
My concern is if there is a water leak somewhere. I am planning to shut down water heater valve -- so that is taken care of .

But we have a forced hot water heating system. The options I am thinking are --

1) Leave it as is and take the risk

2) Shut down the water main . The water main is just inside the basement . There are about 2 feet exposed pipe before the main shut off . Wondering if I can put some sort of low energy heater around the exposed pipe

If I do above, the heating system can probably still continue as long as there is no leak (since it is a sealed system ) . Otherwise , I can drain the water and shut it down .

What would be the best solution ?
Old 01-07-17, 07:34 AM
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For a month...I would shut off the water and leave the heat set on 50 or 55. As you said, with no leaks, boiler should manage without makeup water just fine.

I would try to arrange for someone to stop by every few days for a quick check. If that's not practical, I'd think about installing a web cam. Viewing it would tell you the power is on, and if you want, you could focus it on thermostat so you know inside temp.
Old 01-07-17, 07:55 AM
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Pretty much the same what I do in case of winter vacation, as described CarbideTipped, except...

I don't use webcam, opted for my neighbor check on the house on a daily basis. The fringe benefit... They reset the thermostats to 70 degree on the day we come home. I do the same for them, so, it's reciprocal. With all of the security issues with webcam firmware, I wouldn't risk it...

In addition, both my water temperature and pressure relief valves drain to the waste line, more like the wash machine does. One of them failed when we were home and luckily, there was a bucket under the pipe. That's what made me route the overflow to the drain....
Old 01-07-17, 10:46 AM
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I'm focusing on #2. I'm not understanding the issue with the water main as it pertains to the trip.

It sounds like the water main is in an unprotected area and is a constant source of trouble.
Old 01-07-17, 03:23 PM
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If it were I - I'd have to make arrangements to have somebody look in on the house every few days. Otherwise, I would worry myself sick and it would ruin my vacation.

I am able to check the inside temperature of my house, remotely, over the internet - if the heat were lost, I could call a neighbor or heating contractor and tell them how to get into the house. I haven't done it, but it would be simple to rig up a video camera to display the boiler and the boiler gauge over the internet.

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