The holiday season is full of stressful situations.  We can all agree the last thing anyone is asking Santa for this Christmas is a plumbing emergency. To prevent a visit from the local plumber this year we have complied some tips to keep your drain lines flowing, your basements dry, and your pipes unfrozen.

Don’t treat your garbage disposal like a trash receptacle

We recommend having small containers readily available for grease, potato peels, eggshells etc. to help eliminate the urge to use the disposal as a trash can.  Metal coffee cans are a convenient countertop trash can during meal prep.  Scrape leftovers into the trash and use basket strainer to collect debris as you rinse plates.  This will avoid unnecessary food from entering the drain and potentially causing a backup.

Give toilets an extra flush every now and again

With more people than normal using your facilities this holiday season your plumbing system will naturally have more stress on it.  To help avoid a clogged toilet drain give it an extra flush every now and again.  By sending water only down the drain line you will help push any left-over debris through.  If you are really concerned think about switching to single ply toilet paper while company is visiting.  It is also important that visitors have a place to dispose of personal items such as tampons or wipes so that they aren’t tempted to flush them.

Winterize outdoor faucets & piping

Temperatures here in the north fluctuate a great deal which is why it is crucial to winterize outdoor plumbing, including any hose bibs.  Most local hardware centers sell covers that are made especially for this.  It is also important for any piping in crawl spaces or on outdoor walls be insulated.  These insulating pipe covers look like swimming pool “noodles” and help to prevent frozen pipes when temperatures dip below freezing.

Space out the time between showers

Lots of us end up hosting overnight guests during the holiday which can really tax your hot water heater.  The last thing anyone wants is an icy clod shower.  To prevent overworking your water heater, space out the time between showers.  Waiting 10-15 minutes between showers allows the system to replenish while also allowing the drain time to clear out.  Speaking of shower drains, to prevent a clogged drain install a small strainer over the drain to collect hair and soap residue to be disposed of in the trash.

If you do end up needing a plumber this holiday season, call Horton Plumbing.  With over 30+ years’ experience, the professional plumbers at Horton Plumbing know how to keep your homes plumbing systems running properly throughout the holiday season and beyond.  The plumbers at Horton Plumbing are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  If you need us, we will be there 734.455.3332.