Fixing the leak – basic plumbing tips in case of emergencies

Holiday home plumbing
For the holiday home owner the key is to know where exactly the valves and pipes to shut off water are located.

For a holiday home owner it is essential to know the basic plumbing system of his property to ensure a hassle-free stay for his guests. In case of emergencies, the owner of the holiday home should be able to advice guests to at least take some contingency steps over the phone in the middle of night till the plumber comes the next day.

Leaking taps and faucets can wreck havoc on floors and can turn into a nightmare for guests. So in a plumbing emergency, you will need to stop the flow of water quickly whether it is the bathroom or the kitchen.

It is not uncommon that a holiday home which sees a lot of wear and tear will have a couple of plumbing problems. Leaking kitchen and bathroom faucets are not something new to holiday homes. But it is how the holiday home owner handles such situations when guests are staying which is more important.

If the leak or clog is detected during the day, it’s easier to get the job done. All you need to do is call the plumber or your caretaker to take care of the situation. But when emergencies happen at odd hours, it’s essential to know the basics.


For the holiday home owner the key is to know where exactly the valves and pipes to shut off water are located. Most kitchens and bathrooms have a fairly simple plumbing setup. In a kitchen, they consists of hot and cold water supply lines to the faucets, waste pipes, washing machine pipes and, in some cases, hookups for dishwasher. In bathrooms, it’s just the drainage and water supply systems.

Here are some tips which can help you turn a plumbing nightmare into a hassle-free stay for guests without much sweat:

1. KNOW WHERE THE VALVES ARE: Make a list of the taps/ faucets in your holiday home handy. There are usually valves located under fixtures such as a sink or a toilet, or behind an appliance, such as a washing machine or dishwasher. It is also a good sense to write the locations of these valves on a paper in keep it in the upper drawer of the bedside table. So when the guest calls you to tell you that the water flow from the kitchen sink is not stopping, you can tell him to close the valve below the sink. Also tell him that there is a list of the valves in the drawer beside the bed for further reference.

2. ASSURANCE: If the valve in the kitchen sink has been closed, it means guests will not be able to use the kitchen. Assure them the leaky tap will be fixed early next morning. Apologize for the inconvenience. Most guests will understand and will appreciate your assurance.

3. STICK TO YOUR PROMISE: If you have promised the guest that the faucet will be repaired, stick to your promise. Call the plumber or the caretaker to get it fixed in the morning. If the repairing takes time, make alternative arrangements so that guests are not inconvenienced any further. Keep them informed that you are on the job.

4. CHANGEOVER MAINTENANCE: Preventive measures if taken can always help to avoid emergency situations. So during changeovers, ask the plumber to have a look at all the faucets for leaks and clogs. If he detects any, get them repaired before the guests arrive.

5. PLUMBER AT CALL: It is always a good idea to keep a plumber at call who stays near your property. Even better, if you have a part-time plumber who comes every morning for an hour and attend to complaints if any. Even many gated communities have part-time plumbers, who are stationed at the property for a particular period each day. Part-time plumbers are easy to find and are ideally cheap as they are paid for the job done.

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