How to Turn Off Your Water

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Turning Off the Water to Your Home

Everyone in your home should know how to shut off water to your house. If you have planned work or in the event of an emergency you may need to turn off the water supply to prevent water damage.

Take a few minutes to locate and learn how to operate your house valve. The information below guides you on locating and turning off your water by utilizing the "house valve."

Locating Your House Valve

  • Your house valve is typically located on the outside of your home. It may be in the front, on the side or in the backyard.
  • Look for a hose bib (outside faucet) next to your home with a pipe coming up from the ground (Photo 1).
  • The house valve is located on that pipe between the ground and the hose bib.

Operating Your House Valve

Your house valve can be one of two types: a gate valve (Photo 2) or a ball valve (Photo 3).

  • Gate valves are operated by turning the wheel clockwise until the water is off.
  • Ball valves are operated by turning the handle a quarter turn clockwise until the water is off.
  • To verify the water is off, turn on the hose bib next to the house valve. As you turn the house valve off, the water from the hose bib should stop.
  • To turn the water back on, either turn the gate valve counterclockwise or turn the ball valve a quarter turn counterclockwise.

You may want to attach a label to your house valve for quick identification (so that you and the members of your household can find it even in the dark).


Picture of Hose-bib and piping
Photo 1 - Hose bib and piping

Picture of a Gate Valve
Photo 2 - Gate valve

Picture of a Ball Valve
Photo 3 - Ball valve