How to Locate Your Main Water Shut Off Valve Quickly
Water pouring freely through your home is dangerous, unsafe, and will cause severe flood damage to the interior of your house quickly. When the water is coming from your own home's water supply rather than from outside sources such as flooding, you may and should shut it down immediately. If your water comes from a municipal or local source, do the following steps:
Three Ways to Quickly Find Your Water Shut Off Valve
On the inside of your house, look for the main water shut-off valve. It will usually be positioned on the house's perimeter, where the water enters the house first. Additionally, keep on the street-facing side of the house. Your water main starts typically at the street and runs straight to your home. Turn the handle or knife-style valve once you've located the valve.
If you are still unable to locate the water shut-off valve after physically searching for it, you can consult the property inspection report generated for you during the final stages of your home purchase. Look in the report's plumbing section. This section should include a photo of the shut-off valve and the valve's location. Even though the water system was in good working order at the time of the property inspection report, it should be noted that the shut-off valve should be located as a matter of routine.
If the preceding techniques fail, another valve, known as a curb valve, may be positioned at the start of your water main, at the borderline of your property, and on the street or sidewalk. Locate the metal or plastic utility box trap door placed at ground level. Call the water company's emergency number, which is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Staff may instruct you to turn off the water valve on your own or to wait for an emergency response team.
How to Turn Off Your Shut Off Valve
When a ball valve is open, it has a straight handle parallel to the pipe. The ball valve handle is moved from a parallel to a perpendicular position to turn it off. The valve body features brakes that only allow the handle to move in one direction and halt when it is completely perpendicular.
Within the Utility Box
Lift the lid off the ground-level utility box on the street and place it to the side. Remove any dirt or sand with your hand or a garden trowel if necessary. Do not throw the sand or dirt away. This sand or dirt is essential if you live in a climate where the pipes freeze and burst in the winter. After clearing the box, you'll see the glass-covered meter, which may have a secondary cover to protect the glass. This has nothing to do with turning off the water, so ignore it. Two valves can be found in the utility box.
The street-side valve is located on the water meter's street side. Only the water company can switch off this valve with a unique tool. This should not be turned off. Even if you get a wrench on it, turning it may be pretty tough. Additionally, turning off the water company valve may have legal implications. There will be a valve on the house side of the water meter. It could be a nut or a knob with which to turn.
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