If vacating a condo (for context, high floor apartment-style unit in hi-rise) that will not be used for quite a while, is it ok to shut off it's water for as long as TWO YEARS?

  • 1
    You should seriously weigh the pros and cons of packing up all your belongings you'd be leaving behind, place them in storage (climate controlled if you like) and renting the place out through a local management company, .vs. a two year vacancy. – Ecnerwal Sep 30 '20 at 22:41

There's nothing wrong with shutting off the water for that length of time provided you take the proper precautions. The water in all your traps for the sinks, toilets and showers will evaporate and allow sewer gas and bugs to get into your condo. They should be adequately sealed to prevent this. If you have a water heater, you should drain it and shut off the breaker if it's electric. Drain the water from your fridge, and very importantly use tape or something else to ensure the door is slightly ajar the entire time (otherwise you get terrible stink).

Have your maintenance department shut off the water from outside your unit so a leaky valve won't be your problem.

Or, hire a management company and let it be listed on AirBnB.


You can shut off the water and drain the system, but as part of recommissioning after 2 years the system will have to be flushed through and disinfected, with special attention paid to any dead legs where stagnant water has accumulated. Legionella is the main risk.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.