Things You Should Know: Where is your water shut off valve?

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Do you know where your home’s main water shut-off valve in located? Does everyone in the family know where it is? If there’s an emergency, you will need to know in a hurry. The main shut-off valve to your home controls the incoming water supply. Learn where the valve is and how to shut it off. This information should be readily available for other family members or renters.

The main valve is normally either a round wheel or a straight handle attached to a pipe leading through the floor or the wall of your basement or crawl space. If you have a finished basement, the water pipe may be hidden inside the wall, but the wheel or handle of the valve should be accessible. See images below for reference:

shutoffvalves example

Your house may also have a solenoid switch which is an electronic switch used to turn water on and off. They are also used as access to drain valves for winterizing homes. It is important to know if you have one, where it is and how / what it operates. If this switch is left on, it can continuously run water into a drain valve causing unexpected high usage.

shutoffvalves electric example 

These are the most likely shut-off valve locations:
• In line with the water meter (unless you water meter is located in a meter pit outside).
• Inside, near the location of your outside hose bib.
• Near you clothes washer hook-up
• Near your water heater or boiler.

Every home has a main shut off valve in the house. Be sure you have found the right one by turning it off briefly and checking to see if all the faucets in the home yield no water. If they still run and DO NOT drain out, try again. This may also mean the valve is no longer any good and will need to be replaced. In this case, you would need to have Roamingwood Sewer & Water come out and shut off your service at the street. This can be done by calling (570) 698-6162 for an appointment to shut water off and turn back on, for repairs. Once it is confirmed the valve is operating properly, it should be clearly labeled, and all persons living in the house, should be shown how to operate it.

The key to fixing most plumbing issues begins with shutting off the water to the affected area. In most cases the items that need attention, like a sink or toilet, have their own shut-off valve, usually located beneath each fixture. If it is an uncontainable problem like a burst pipe or involves a fixture that has no shut-off valve of its own, shut off your home’s main water valve.
 

WHERE IS YOUR ELECTRICAL PANEL?

 


In addition to knowing the location of your homes water shut-off valve, it is important to know where your homes electrical service panel is located. In most cases, electrical panels can be found in the basement & near the electrical meter. This is generally outside of your house, about 5ft above the ground and easily accessible.

In the event you need to drain your water heater for service or maintenance, or turn your main water valve off for an extended period, the electrical power supply to the water heater should be turned off. These specific circuit breakers should be clearly labeled inside the panel.