Getting Ready For Vacation
Air Conditioning Repair Plano, TX
How to Secure Your Home for Vacation
Summer is most family’s time for the annual vacation and it is always anticipated. It is a time for the family to visit new places, enjoy an adventure, fulfill a dream, relax and enjoy time together and a time to have fun. You don’t want to spend your vacation time worrying about home, so before you set off on your summer vacation prepare ahead so you can fully enjoy your family and fun with the following tips.
- Turn off the water. Failure to do this can result in catastrophic damage to your home. If you have shut off valves you can turn the water off at each appliance and fixture or shut off the water main.
- Shut off the water heater in the breaker box. To prevent the potential of a flood shut the water heater off as well as the water main as previously noted. Just because it is new doesn’t mean a failure won’t occur. Thermostats can fail, high pressure release valves can fail, and pipes can burst on their own or as a result of high pressure related to the failure of any of the previous. Too be safe, shut it off.
- Adjust the thermostat. If you have a programmable thermostat use the permanent hold setting to override all pre-programmed settings. Program the desired temperature to operate approximately an hour before you plan to return for a comfortable home. If the thermostat isn’t a programmable one set it to 85 degrees for maximum energy savings.
- Unplug the television, computers, stereos, small kitchen appliances and personal appliances such as hair dryers. Double check and have another adult to check behind you that the stove and oven are cut off. Ensure the automatic programmable coffee pot is unplugged.
- Have a friend or relative check on your home. Ask them to pick up mail and the newspaper, or request they be held until your return. If you are going to be away for more than a week, arrange to have the lawn mowed while you are away.
- Use timers to deter thieves. Set up a timer to operate at least one light in the home in the living room and a radio. If more than one timer is present set up the second timer to turn on a bedroom light after for the normal length of time it would be on if you were home, and then back off. Modern televisions will shut themselves down, use an old analog TV, or a radio if you don’t have one.
- Don’t post your vacation plans on social media such as Facebook. You can individually notify friends and relatives that you will be out of town.
- Don’t change the message on the answering machine.
- Let your local police know you will be on vacation, but only if you know and trust them. Leave a key with a trusted friend as well as the security code if you have a security system, and let the police know the name and phone number of the friend with the key and code.
- Remove the spare key. Don’t leave spare keys out when you are on vacation. Thieves know all of the hiding places.
- Leave shades and blinds as you normally do. If you normally have blinds open in the day and close them at night begin leaving some of them closed a few months before your vacation. Or leave them open all of the time. Thieves will note what is different and if they do not see you coming and going will assume you are out of town.
- Don’t leave expensive items in view of windows. Move TVs and other electronics or make it a habit to keep the blinds closed a few months in advance of the vacation. Window film can prevent anyone from seeing in, including the police unfortunately.
- If a street light is blown request repair. Burglars dislike well lit areas. Motion sensor lights often “spook” would be burglars away.
- Place a bar in the sliding doors track, even an old shower curtain rod will work. Bolts are available to secure the movable portion of the door to the immovable section, but require drilling a hole in the frame.
- If you don’t have a security system, install individual door & window alarms. They ‘stick’ on and work by magnetic contact, if a door or window is opened the loud alarm is activated. Though low cost, they have effectively driven off many would be burglars. Find the necessary position before using the adhesive to position. Buy a security system sign for the lawn on eBay.
- Ask trusted neighbors to keep an eye on your home and park in your drive while you are away. If you have neighborhood watch notify them that you’ll be on vacation.
- Lock up bicycles and lawn mowers. These are frequently stolen when the family is on vacation.
- Turn the ringer on the phone down or off. An unanswered phone alerts a thief (who may be the person calling) that you aren’t there. Call forwarding will send any calls to your cell phone while you are away. Don’t reveal you are on vacation to stranger calls, just say you’re not interested and hang up.
- Ask a trusted friend or relative to “sit” your house while away. This eliminates the need for all of the previous preparations and places someone there to care for any pets.
- If the theft of HVAC condensing units (the part outside) is a problem in your neighborhood consider having a “cage” installed around it by your HVAC technician. Specifically manufactured to deter HVAC copper theft it is an effective deterrent.
Cypress Heating and Air Conditioning provides certified and experienced technicians for all of your HVAC needs. If you need air conditioning repair in Plano, TX or the Katy region give our dedicated techs a call for heating and air conditioning repair, service, maintenance or professional heating and air conditioning installation.