How to Properly Shut Off Water For Plumbing Repairs

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How to shut off water for plumbing work
How to shut off water for plumbing work

How to Shut Off Water For Plumbing Repairs

Turning off the water supply in your house is normally needed when you are making plumbing repair work to any of the fixtures or pipes in your home’s plumbing system. There are at least three different places you can cut off the water, and your option of areas will depend on where the leakage or the plumbing repair work requires to take place. Typically, it will require no tools at all to merely shut off the water.

Here are numerous places where water can be shut off, and how to choose the right one.

Turning the Water off at the Fixture
If a faucet is dripping or a toilet is running, or if a leak starts in a refrigerator ice maker, dishwasher, washing machine, or any home appliance that uses by water-your first and finest choice is to shut down the water right at that fixture or device. By shutting the water off locally in this way, other fixtures in your house can continue to run untouched while you take your time to make the repair work.

Toilet Supply Shut Off
Toilet Supply Shut Off

The fixture shut-off valves will differ in style and area, but usually, they will be extremely near the fixture or appliance.

  • For refrigerator ice makers/water dispensers, the small copper or mesh supply tube going to the refrigerator generally has a small saddle valve or fixture shutoff valve that can be shut down to shut down the water supply. In some cases, the supply tube running to the refrigerator might take advantage of a water system line underneath the sink, near where the sink faucet supply tubes are connected.
  • For sink faucets, try to find the shutoff valves located below the sink, near where the supply of water feeds in the tailpieces on the faucet. Any faucet that provides both hot and cold water will have 2 valves– one for the hot water supply and one for the cold.
  • For showers/tubs, take a look around the tub or shower for an access panel. It might be on the other side of the wall from the tub or shower. If it is not found behind an access panel, then it may be found under the floor in the basement or a ceiling to gain access to the panel in the flooring below.
  • For dishwashing machines, the supply of water tubes running to the dishwashing machine typically has a component shutoff valve managing it. In a lot of cases, this is also located under the cooking area sink base cabinet, and it may be near the sink faucet shut-off valves.
  • For washing machines, there is usually a supply of water valves controlling the hot water inlet pipe and another controlling the cold water. These may be located on a sink if your laundry room has one, sometimes in a recessed supply of water valve box set into the wall near the washing machine. This can be shut off whenever you need to work on the appliance.
  • For toilets, there will be a single shut-off valve (a toilet uses just cold water), typically located near the flooring listed below the water system valve on the bottom of the toilet tank. This supply valve is usually near the bottom left side of the toilet tank.

You get the idea. Any fixture or home appliance needs to be equipped with some close-located shut-off valves.

But if you don’t see the shut-off valves, do not fret. You can shut down the water by shutting off the primary supply of water valve near the water meter. That location is described listed below.

Some homes are equipped with branch valves that can be utilized to shut off the water system to selected branch lines in the home. These valves will be located along the main branch pipes and lie in available utility locations. Water pipelines feeding outdoor hose faucets are really typically managed by in-line valves that control only the pipelines running to the outdoor faucets.

Turning the Water off at the Water Heater
When a hot water pipe is leaking, or if you need to repair or replace a water heater, there are shut-off valves located near your hot water heater.

A hot water heater has 2 shut-off valves A cold water inlet valve (frequently recognized by a blue handle) feeds cold water from the primary supply into the water heater. This is the valve to shut down if you have to repair or replace the hot water heater.

The hot water outlet pipeline also has a valve that will shut down all hot water exiting the water heater. You can shut off this valve if you have a leak in a hot water pipeline someplace in the house considering that this valve successfully manages all warm water in the house. Often, this valve is coded with a red handle to suggest it controls hot water. This convenient color coding is very important, because often the cold water inlet pipeline and the hot water outlet pipeline are frequently really near to one another, and they would be tough to tell apart without this color coding.

Turning the Water Off at the Main Shutoff Valve
If your leakage is somewhere in the main branch line, or if there is no component shut-off valve near the fixture you require to fix or replace, find the main shut-off valve for the home. This is typically found in an energy area near where the primary water line goes into the house, or on an outside wall near the water meter. This valve will always be found on the house side of the water meter and it is generally a rather large valve

This valve hardly ever gets closed, so it may be a little stiff to operate.

After shutting down the primary shut-off valve, if you open the lowest faucet in your house (such as in a basement or a foundation-level outside faucet) and also the highest faucet in the home, it will enable water standing in the pipes system to recede. This indicates the water system pipes will be empty of water, which can prevent water from spilling out when you start your deal with them.

Turning the Water off at the Water Meter
You may likewise be able to shut off the water at the water meter itself. Water meter boxes often have two shutoff valves, one on the home side and one on the street side of the meter. This ought to be a last hope since in lots of communities there are ordinances that frown on homeowners touching any part of the pipes system positioned on the street side of the water meter. The pipelines beyond the meter technically come from the city, so you need to not touch this valve unless there is no other option– such as if the primary shut-off valve on the house side is non-existent or doesn’t work.

South End Plumbing specializes in drain jetting, so remember, we are just a click away. We also specialize in leak detection – give us a call! South End Plumbing is one of the only companies that will give you a free estimate. Call us at 704-919-1722 or fill out the form online to schedule a visit.

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