Becoming a Snowbird


by, The Home Watch Guy, LLC


Becoming a seasonal homeowner, or a "Snowbird," can be an exciting and fulfilling experience. However, it comes with its unique set of challenges and responsibilities. In this blog post, we will address some crucial questions and provide tips to ensure a worry-free and well-maintained home while you're away. At The Home Watch Guy, LLC, we specialize in offering peace of mind to homeowners in York, Ogunquit, Wells, and Kittery, and we're here to guide you through the process.

1.Should I Leave the Heat On? 

  • One of the most common concerns for seasonal homeowners is how to protect their property from freezing temperatures. While leaving the heat on is a safe way to prevent frozen pipes, it comes with energy costs.
  • We recommend turning the thermostat down to around 55 degrees, striking a balance between safety and cost-efficiency.
  • If you decide to turn off the furnace to save on fuel costs, it's essential to address the specific heating system in your home. Hot air heat is relatively simple to manage, but a hot water boiler requires a professional touch.

You can either drain the system or opt for a more permanent solution by filling it with antifreeze. The latter only needs to be done the first time you shut down your home.

2. Should I Leave the Water On?

  • The decision to leave the water on depends on your approach to heating. If you turn off the heat, it's crucial to drain the pipes to prevent freezing.
  • Hiring a plumber to drain the pipes and the use compressed air is the best approach. They will also ensure water fill valves are removed from appliances and add antifreeze to fixtures.
  • If you choose to leave the heat on, you should, at a minimum, shut off the main supply valve and open cabinet doors under sinks in the bath and kitchen.

3. Can I Do It Myself? 

  • Your ability to manage this largely depends on your decision regarding heating. If you leave the heat on, you can handle it yourself.
  • However, if you opt to turn off the heat, it's advisable to seek professional assistance in properly draining your home's water system.

4. What If We Have a Bad Storm?