In just a few short days, we will embark in what many consider the most wonderful time of year! And while many people are enjoying their turkey dinners, drinking their eggnog, and caroling to their heart’s desires, they are blissfully unaware at what might be lurking within their plumbing. The holidays always prove to be one of the busiest times for plumbers. There are weather concerns, as well as extra cooking, and extra entertaining which can put extra stress on a plumbing system. Here are some holiday plumbing tips to help you get through the holidays.
It never fails, this time of year is prone to garbage disposal problems. Why? Because many people are under the impression that their garbage disposal doubles as an actual trash can. This couldn’t be farther from the truth! Garbage disposals were designed to break up particles of food that got rinsed off dirty dishes. This helps prevents clogs, as larger food particles and other debris can start to accumulate in plumbing pipes causing clogs. It is much easier for smaller particles to pass through the pipes. However, this does not mean that all of your leftovers go into the garbage disposal. Large particles of food should always be scraped into the trash can. In addition, peels, cores, bones, fat, grease, trash, and other debris should never go into the garbage disposal.
Skip the Liquid Drain Cleaner
If you find yourself in the middle of a clogged drain, avoid the liquid drain cleaner. Liquid drain cleaner is dangerous to handle, isn’t all that effective, can cause damage to your pipes, and is bad for the environment. If you have the time, it is always a good idea to have your drains cleaned before the busy holiday season begins. However, we get it, your busy, you don’t lie awake at night thinking about your regular drain cleaning, so often this task is put on the back burner. That is until there is a problem. Instead of reaching for the liquid drain cleaner, try:
Plunging – Make sure you are using the right plunger for the drain, as not all plungers are created equal. Make sure the plunger is fully submerged to allow for better suction. Give it a couple of plunges. You may need to repeat several times.
Auger – An auger is used to break through clogs. We recommend all homeowners have one on hand just in case. Funnel the auger down the drain until you reach the obstruction. Then either give it a couple of cranks until it stops. It will either break apart the obstruction or push it through. If the drain doesn’t start draining, you may need to repeat.
Hair Clogs – Hair clogs are very common, but fortunately easy to resolve. Try cleaning out the hair with a flexisnake. It kind of looks like a pipe cleaner with barbs designed to grab onto the hair and pull it out. They are very inexpensive, and also good to have on hand. In addition, investing in a drain screen is affordable and a great way from preventing hair from going down the drain.
The holidays coincide with the coldest time of year. As temperatures drop, your pipes may be susceptible to freezing. Frozen pipes can cause a myriad of problems, so all precautions should be taken to make sure this doesn’t happen. Insulation is an affordable way to protect pipes that are exposed to the elements from freezing. In addition, it is a good idea to make sure your home is properly sealed. Any openings that allow cold air in should be closed. This not only helps prevent frozen pipes, but also makes it easier to maintain the temperature of your home.
The holidays are a special time, and we want you to enjoy your time with your loved ones, not worry about plumbing problems. That’s why we are here 24 hours a day. They say an ounce of prevention is worth is weight in gold, so now is the perfect time to schedule your routine maintenance. For more holiday plumbing tips, or to schedule service contact Lesco Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling today!