Few 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 the 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 good 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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