Water Cut-Off Valves

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Services for Real Estate Pros with TheHousingGuru.com

Water cut-off valveFew homeowners are aware of the locations of the various water cut-off valves in their home until there is a water emergency, such as a broken pipe, leaky icemaker line, or washing machine overflow. And time wasted looking for a cut-off valve can add hundreds or even thousands to the damage that can be caused. And it’s not just one family member that needs this vital information; everyone in the household should be made aware. A little bit of knowledge and preparedness in this area can save thousands of dollars in repairs and help avoid the panic of searching as water floods a home.

 

Each home has multiple cut-off valves where the water can be turned off individually to fixtures, to defined areas, and in most homes at least one main cut-off for the entire house. Knowing Water cut-off valvesthe location of these important valves can save both money and frustration. Generally there are cut-off valves behind each toilet, under sinks for both hot and cold water, cut-off valves at appliances that use water (such as refrigerators, icemakers, and washing machines), cut-off valves for outside water spigots, at water heaters for turning off the hot water to the home, a main cut-off where the water line enters the home, and another main cut-off at the outside water meter.

 

These photos show some of the various types of water cut-off valves, and while their appearance varies widely, you should find yours in the locations mentioned above. If you don’t know where the water cut-off valves are located in your home, it’s a Toilet and cut-off valvegood idea to find them and to note their location for future reference. Doing so can save a lot of headache and help avoid major damage from plumbing leaks.

 

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Rainmaker
224,148
Suesan Jenifer Therriault
JTHIS-Professional Home Inspection Team - Blakeslee, PA
"Inspecting every purchase as if it were my own".

Jon
Another fine post and I really like your use of the pictures. Sometimes people get a little confused by the different types of valves, this helps the consumer identify some of the different types.
Sue

August 19, 2009 10:15 AM #1
Rainmaker
453,501
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Sue - I started to use additional photos, but decided it would be a bit much. I do know that many homeowners have no idea how to turn of the water. (I have an interesting story from my plumber that I'll share sometime)

August 19, 2009 10:25 AM #2
Rainer
286,994
Leslie Helm
Tennessee Recreational Properties - Jamestown, TN
Real Estate For Trail Riders

Good post, John! This is something everyone should know and most people don't! I learned that we did not have an outside water shut-off valve the day someone's horse stuck his head over the trough I put at the end of my driveway, right on the trail. (I also have a little kiosk co-located with the trough so people can pick up listing fliers while they're stopping to give their horses a drink....LOL) Anyway, the horse hooked his bridle on the hydrant and...he should have "given" to pressure and stepped forward...but that's not what he did. Yup, you guessed it! He panicked and pulled back, breaking his bridle, and RIPPING THE HYDRANT OUT OF THE GROUND. With predictable results, I might add. As water geysered 30' in the air, that's when we discovered that the water shut-off valve was in the basement...um....somewhere. (Also, I must confess, "we" did not have a problem because I was sitting in an air conditioned office doing floor duty, 15 miles away, when this happened).

August 19, 2009 10:50 AM #3
Rainmaker
453,501
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Leslie - As a homebuilder I ALWAYS pointed out the cut-offs to the purchaser and tried to emphasize their importance.

August 19, 2009 11:01 AM #4
Anonymous
Anonymous
Laura

I am dealing with this problem right now.  I am on a slab and need to install a water pressure regulator.  We have looked everywhere for the main cutoff valve, since that is where the regulator needs to be installed.  The laundry room, attic, utility closet (water heater room), garage & can't find it.  My next step is going door to door asking my neighbors with similar homes.  Do you have any advise on locating this?

September 09, 2009 09:20 AM #5
Rainmaker
453,501
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Laura - Check inside the vanity cabinets, under the kitchen sink, or look for an access panel--it could be flat plastic or a metal grill--in a closet, garage wall, or utility room.  You're welcome to call me if you wish.  404/310-6015

Good luck!

September 09, 2009 10:08 AM #6
Anonymous
Anonymous
Laura

John - thank you for the input.  I will check everywhere that I have water in the house and see if I find anything new.  My dad is thinking worse case senario we dig up part of the yard and put in on the main line coming into the house but it would be nice to avoid that if possible. I have also wondered if the sheetrock people might have covered it up. Thanks again.

September 09, 2009 12:32 PM #7
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