Hosting Thanksgiving? Here are our best Thanksgiving tips to help ensure your household plumbing continues to flow smoothly during the holiday season.
During this time of year, the combination of cold weather and the increase in use that your plumbing system will see means a greater likelihood of a plumbing emergency. Plumbing emergencies tend to happen when you least expect, and they’re always a hassle. This is why we have prepared this helpful list, to keep you on the safe side.
Garbage Disposals don’t handle potatoes, bones, turkey skin, or onion peels very well. If you can, avoid putting these in your disposal.
NEVER pour grease, fats, or oil into the kitchen sink drain as these will clog your pipes when they cool and become solidified. Deposit fats in an old can or jar and then throw them away!
Do not place food into the kitchen drain that will expand, such as rice, as this will only lead to stoppage and clogs.
Take it easy on your water pressure! Consider washing dishes or using the dishwasher during the evening, when others have finished showering, so you save more water for house guests and maintain better water pressure.
Speaking of which, the garbage disposal isn’t meant for more than half of the things that wind up down there. Hard, stringy, or fibrous materials are never good. Your typical garbage disposal was originally designed for lingering, light residue waste when rinsing the dishes, so things like banana peels, poultry skins, asparagus, lettuce have to be disposed of in small doses with lots of COLD water.
Bathroom Plumbing Tips
Encourage your house guests not to flush certain items or products down the drains such as napkins, hand wipes, facial scrubbers, hair, or other non-flushable products.
Spread showers out through the day rather than having them back to back. It’s best to have at least ten minutes between each, to maintain hot water.
Turn up the heat of your water heater slightly during the holidays to retain more hot water for your guests, but do not exceed 125°F
When you have guests, it’s important that your showers are ready. Place some vinegary in a plastic bag and fix it to your showerhead with a rubber band. Let it sit for a few hours. Then, use a toothbrush to scrub mineral deposits gently from your shower head to improve its flow and maintain pressure.
General Home Plumbing Thanksgiving Tips
While the bathroom and the kitchen will see the majority of the action over Thanksgiving, there are still some general guidelines to follow for taking care of your pipes during the holidays.
As a preventative measure, it’s a good idea to insulate the pipes in your basement, attic, garage, crawl space, especially during extremely cold weather. A small trickle of water running through a frozen solid pipe can cause it to burst water everywhere.
Disconnect outdoor hoses to prevent them from freezing during extra-cold weather. They can also cause leakage issues when they thaw out in the spring.
Stop drafts where water supply pipes are located, or anywhere pipes don’t get a lot of heat.
Use a non-flammable heat source such as a blow dryer or heat lamp to help thaw out frozen pipes.
You may not realize it, but you’re putting your home plumbing to the test during the holidays when you’re cooking big, elaborate meals and you have a lot of guests in the home. A lot of drain clogs happen around the holidays due to the buildup of debris such as soap residue, grease, hair, or food. Build-ups like these happen over time, but the holidays are typically the tipping point when real plumbing emergencies can occur. During the holidays there is simply more grease, food, and other debris in or near the garbage disposal and drains. There are more showers and baths which require more hot water when your pipes are already straining against the cold weather. When there’s more activity, there are more chances for emergencies to occur.
Oh, and our last tip would be, to have your plumber’s phone number on hand just in case you have a plumbing emergency during the holidays, that can’t actually be avoided.
If living in Miami, your plumbing expert should be JCN. We have a team of professionals that will do their best to fix the issue right away.