Maintaining your vacation home from afar - Part
Maintaining your vacation home from afar – Part I
Having a vacation home likely helps soothe the dread that can accompany harsh winters. But unless you have recently returned from a getaway, or plan to take one soon, your vacation home may not have crossed your mind in a while. Your home away from home may not be as you remember it if you’ve left it unattended for months at a time.
Vacationing in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, however, is a unique circumstance. Fort Lauderdale might be less acknowledged, but it’s equally as warm and inviting as a neighboring city to Miami. Broward County, the home of Fort Lauderdale, receives more than 150 hours of sunshine per year, and, according to World Weather and Climate, has high relative humidity rates year-round. This may sound like a dream come true to someone looking to escape inclement weather, but normal humidity levels in homes should not exceed 50 percent. Continued exposure to a damp atmosphere can have adverse effects on your plumbing system, walls and appliances.
Preventative care for your vacation home could be the extra travel arrangement that ensures your hiatus is uninterrupted – namely that when your respite is not tainted by unexpected water damage.
Humidity should certainly be an area of concern even if you are a part-time Floridian. One way to manage such damp conditions is via your thermostat. You aren’t the only one that benefits from the cool air – appliances and furniture are also susceptible to the high-humidity climate. Mold, premature deterioration, and pests can all come from too much moisture in the air. When confined to small areas, like that of an appliance, mold can corrode the metals on the inside and damage its electrical makeup, said Palm Beach, Florida, appliance services company Essential Appliance.
Monitoring humidity levels when you aren’t nearby could have once seemed like a far-fetched idea, but with the advancement of technology it has now become quite easy. Opting for a remote thermostat control can make adjusting the temperatures in your vacation home as easy as picking up your phone. Programming your air conditioner to activate early in the morning will help eliminate much moisture when humidity is its highest. Whole-house dehumidifiers and ceiling fans are also good options that will reduce energy costs.
Being tasked with unexpected leak detection is never fun – even less so when it was not on your vacation itinerary. Travelers.com recommended clearing all water from your pipes when anticipating a prolonged absence. Flushing your toilet and leaving any faucets open will assist with drainage. Because your vacation home is in a warm region, there is no threat of freezing pipes. Consider completely turning off the water supply if there will be no one to check on your abode until you return. Unintentional water flow can result in water line leaks, appliance malfunctions (damaged washing machine hose, etc.), flooding and more.
If you are fortunate enough to have someone available for routine inspections, USA Today suggested having your house-sitter turn the water on once a month to prevent the entrance of sewer gas.
Be sure to check out the second installment of this series, for more ways to manage your Fort Lauderdale vacation home from afar. Should your vacation home be threatened by a leak, contact American Leak Detection. Our Florida services extend to Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale, Pembroke Pines, Hollywood, Deerfield Beach, Pompano Beach, Weston and Dania. Call (866) 570-5325 for a location near you.