Holiday Plumbing Tips From Mr. Plumber

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Phil Puccio

Sanitary tips for the vacation

The holidays are some of the busiest times for plumbers. Families spend more time preparing larger meals, which often means your sink or waste disposal facility has to work at full capacity. Families also invite additional guests, which means a significant increase in water consumption. And with all of the extra rinsing, showering, and laundry washing, there is a higher chance of problems with the plumbing.

However, that doesn’t mean you have to cut back on your celebrations! Here are some tips from Mr. Plumber to avoid a plumbing emergency while on vacation:

The kitchen

Throwing everything in the trash can during these busy times may be tempting, but there are some foods that you should avoid. These include:

  • Fat and oil – Turkey fat solidifies in your garbage disposal, preventing it from going down the drain. Over time, the fat begins to rot and smell.
    • Instead of this: Use a glass to catch the fat or collect the oil with paper towels.
  • Starchy food – Rice, pasta, potatoes expand with water and form a glue-like consistency that can lead to blockages.
  • Peels – Thread-shaped vegetable pods can wrap around the waste disposal knives and jam them.
    • Instead of this: Use a newspaper to cover up the trash and peel your veggies and starch over it.
  • Harsh chemicals – Chemicals such as drain cleaners can damage the blades and waste disposal parts.
    • Instead of this: Scatter half a cup of baking powder and vinegar and let each rest for 10 minutes. Let it warm up for another 5 minutes. If this does not clear the blockage, then do not try to clear the blockage with your hands! Call us to have the severity of the constipation assessed.
  • Bones or pods – Disposal blades aren’t as strong as you might think. Trying to use the disposal for these items will break the blades, which could lead to the failure of the disposer.
    • Instead of this: Use a disposal plug / guard to prevent these items from falling into your disposal.

Some things to use with your disposal are:

  • Cold water – Let cold water run for 30 seconds before, during and after grinding. This will help the knives chop up the food easily and drain it down the drain.
  • Citrus peel – Citrus peel can help freshen up the smell of disposal.
  • Washing-up liquid – Small amounts of detergent and cold water help to clean the internal parts of the disposer.
  • Ice cubes – Throwing a few ice cubes in the trash can help break up leftover food.
  • The bathroom

Keep a trash can

The best way to avoid clogging the toilet is simply not to force it to flush more than necessary. Equip your bathroom with a trash can so guests don’t have to flush too much toilet paper.

Inform guests about low-flow toilets

Having low flow toilets in your home can come as a shock to someone who is not used to it. Often times, people try to flush more than necessary or unknowingly add too much toilet paper. Let all of your guests know in advance that you won’t have to wash up more than once and use the trash can to get rid of the trash

Keep a flask close by

Clogging still occurs despite our best efforts, but the worst thing you can do is not fix it right away. Keep a plunger near your toilet so whoever caused the blockage can try to clear it themselves.

The boiler

As mentioned earlier, this means your household will be using a lot more hot water if there are many guests around. If your home has an older water heating system, the additional exposure could cause leaks or even flooding. The best way to prevent this from happening is to arrange regular pipeline maintenance with Mr. Plumber. We can tell you if your water heater can take extra use during the holidays. So you won’t be surprised by hidden problems!

Mr Plumber makes sure we have a lot of qualified, licensed technicians on hand to help you with any plumbing problems you may encounter this holiday season. Whether it’s disposal, toilet or water heater problems, we at Mr. Plumber are all ready to help! Contact us today for all of your plumbing needs.

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