Snowbirds are lucky individuals who move to warmer states for the winter months. In fact, snowbirds generally flock together in Florida. If you've finally reached retirement and are planning on spending your winters in a warmer southern state, there are a few important things to consider about your northern home, especially if you have boiler heating and a spa. Here's what you need to know.
Leave the utilities on
While it may be tempting to turn off all the utilities while you are gone, doing so could be disastrous. Freezing temperatures could easily cause your pipes to freeze and then burst when temperatures rise again. Therefore, you'll want to keep the heat on in your home, at least to the lowest setting possible. Also, a dark house with no electricity is too inviting to criminals.
If you have a boiler for heating, you'll also need to leave the water on. Boilers require a constant supply of new water to replace the water that gets used when the boiler creates steam. A dry boiler could result in an explosion, as the temperatures inside the boiler can increase dangerously when there is no water inside.
Do not drain & shut down your spa
Do not drain your spa and shut it down when you leave your northern home. Without water in the spa and the piping of the spa, the O-rings, gaskets, and seals can easily dry out, which can cause them to crack. Should any of these parts crack, it can lead to expensive leaks that will need to be repaired. Of course, the leaks could cause extensive water damage to your home, especially if your spa is a larger size and you don't notice the leaks until you've refilled the spa. These types of repairs can cost far more than leaving the spa filled.
Since you'll want to keep your utilities on and your spa filled, it's a good idea to have a friend, family member, or neighbor check on things occasionally, especially if there are any power outages that may require a reset button to be pushed for your boiler, spa, or well pump if you have a well as your water source. Also, they can turn the spa on for a few minutes to keep the water from becoming stagnant. If you don't have anyone reliable or trustworthy enough to inspect your home and spa while you are away, hire a property management firm or a spa service like Aqua Care Pool & Spa Service & Repair to do inspections for you.