The holidays are here! Along with all the preparations, cooking, gift wrapping, and family celebration that happens at this time of year, it’s easy to forget about your plumbing system. However, due to the extra use most home plumbing systems go through during the holidays, now is the perfect time to make sure that your plumbing system is ready for the season. To help you along your way towards perfect holiday plumbing preparedness, the team of plumbers here at Right Away Plumbing has made a list (and checked it twice) of a few holiday plumbing tips and tricks! So, without further ado, let’s get started!
1 – Holiday Maintenance for Your Kitchen Sink
To make sure your kitchen sink is ready for the holiday season, simply do the following:
- Place drain screens on all your kitchen drains (excluding the garbage disposal drain)
- Make sure that you clean out your drain trap before cooking your big holiday meal(s)
- Use lemon skins to help make your garbage disposal and sink smell fresh and clean
Additionally, you should avoid putting any of the following items down the drain:
- Coffee grounds
- Vegetable skins and peels
- Other types of food waste
Furthermore, if you have a garbage disposal, then avoid putting any of the following items down your disposal drain:
- Celery and other tough, fibrous vegetables
- Potato peels or vegetable skins
- Coffee grounds
- Grease, fat, or oil
- Fruit pies
2 – Locate and Memorize the Location of Your Main Water Shutoff Valve
One of the most important things you can do this holiday season (well, it’s important regardless of the time of year) is to locate your main water shutoff valve. Every single home and building has one. They’re usually found outside your home, on the side facing the street. In fact, finding your shutoff valve is so important that you should go find yours as soon as you’re done reading this blog post.
Why is finding your shutoff valve so important? Well, turning off the main valve is the first thing you should do in the event of a plumbing emergency. For example, let’s say your Cousin Eddie showed up to your holiday party (uninvited), and he somehow managed to clog your main sewer line, consequently flooding your bathroom. Before you rush in with a plunger and to lob a few choice words at Cousin Eddie, you should head out to your main water valve to shut off the water supply. Doing so will stop the flood from getting worse, giving you all the time you need to clean up the mess and kick Ed to the curb.
3 – Holiday Preparedness for Your Bathroom
Even if you have a dastardly Cousin Eddie in your family, there are a few things you can do to help mitigate the potentially inevitable holiday bathroom catastrophe. All you have to do is inform your guests what does and does not belong in the toilet. For some strange and inexplicable reason, people tend to put a whole slew of things down the toilet during a party that they wouldn’t ever put down their own porcelain thrown. If you don’t know what shouldn’t go down the toilet, then consult the following list:
- Wet wipes (even the ones that say “flushable”)
- Paper towels and other paper products (except for toilet tissue)
- Feminine hygiene products
- Food or food waste
- Grease, fat, or oil
- Q-tips (cotton swabs)
- Facial tissue
4 – How to Prevent Frozen Pipes this Holiday Season
Here in Chicago, it gets frigid during the holiday season, which means your pipes have a high chance of freezing. Well, they have a high probability of freezing if you don’t do anything to prevent it. So, to help you avoid frozen pipes this holiday season (and for the rest of the winter) do one or more of the following:
- Leave a trickle of water running on outside spigots and faucets
- Pour 1oz of antifreeze down your drains and toilets (this is especially important if you plan on not using a drain or toilet for a while, or if you leave the house)
- Consider installing pipe insulation or a pipe heater on any exposed plumbing
- Insulate your water heater
- Make sure to use every faucet, spigot, and water-using appliance often during the winter and holiday seasons
If you still wind up with frozen pipes, then turn off your water main (as mentioned in tip 2) and contact us here at Right Away Plumbing. Remember, the faster you get a handle on your frozen pipe problem, the better off you’ll be.
Still, Worried About Your Plumbing During the Holidays?
If you’re still worried about your plumbing this holiday season, then don’t fret! The team of professional plumbers here at Right Away Plumbing is always standing by to give you a helping hand. Contact us, and we’ll head out to your home or business to help make sure your plumbing system is ready for the holiday season. After all, there’s nothing less jolly than a clogged toilet or broken garbage disposal!
Happy Holidays from the Home Service Professionals Here at Right Away Plumbing!