Water Shut Off Valve

What You Should Know About Your Home’s Water Shut-Off Valve

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Do you know where your water shut-off valve is?  You may often find the valve in an outside corner of your house. If you must turn off the water to your home, it is worth learning how and where to turn off the main water supply.   

Home water systems contain two types of shut-off valves: 1) the main or master shut-off valves for stopping the flow of water to the entire house, and 2) the individual or supply shut-off valves for specific appliances and fixtures. Valves vary greatly in location, shape, and number, depending on the age of your house, the local codes, and which part of the country you live in.  

Here are the common areas where you can find the valves. 


Most water shut-off valves are in the basement and will likely be on the opposite side of the wall’s exterior hose bib.  (A hose bib is an outdoor water faucet protruding from your structure at about sill height, which is usually threaded to accept a hose connection).      


If your house is on a slab, your main water shut-off valve should be near your water heater tank, either under the tank or on the top. It could be shaped like a ring (called a gate valve), or it could be a lever type (called a ball valve).  

Crawl Space 

Your main shut-off valve could be in the crawl space. Usually, you can find it along the front wall of the house underneath the crawl space.  

Can’t Find the Shut-Off Valve? 

If you can’t find the main water shut-off valve in an emergency, the water can be shut off from the main city water line. It’s usually located at the front of the house in a covered box. A special tool is needed to turn the shut-off valve to the “off” position.  Visit a plumbing supply store for this tool, or research online.  

For more information on how to protect your home, visit the professionals at Hoffman Brown Company. They are happy to help.