The holiday season is almost here, which means homeowners across the country are preparing to host family and friends for dinners and parties. But while lots of time is spent shopping, cooking and cleaning, it’s easy to forget one very important factor: ensuring your home’s plumbing is ready to accommodate your guests.
With the arrival of colder weather comes the possibility of many kinds of plumbing problems, and the last thing you need before Thanksgiving dinner or your annual holiday get-together is a home repair emergency. That’s why the team at Barlow Service Experts, America’s most trusted heating, cooling and plumbing professionals, have provided some helpful tips to help you lower your chance of experiencing a plumbing disaster so you can enjoy time with those closest to you.
1. Respect your garbage disposal
Your garbage disposal might seem (and sound!) indestructible, but the truth is that it can only handle so much. As you prepare your meals this year, consider what you’re putting through your garbage disposal and remember not to use it as a trash can. Avoid putting celery, potatoes, carrots, onions, lettuce, grease, oil, fat, bones, egg shells, pastas, rice and coffee into your disposal. These are difficult for the blades to grind up and can lead to blockages. Also remember to only run cold water when you use your disposal and use a small amount of dish soap when cleaning it.
2. Routinely clean your drain
It’s common to rely on a basic drain cleaning product for a clogged bathtub or sink, but this is a short-term solution that will often not rectify the problem in the long run. This is why it’s important to regularly clean your drain before the issue arises so that your guests don’t experience a clogged shower drain or an unwanted odor coming from the sink. To prevent drain clogs, consider investing in a hair catcher for your shower drain and a beard apron for your bathroom sink. These are often inexpensive and can be purchased online or at home goods stores.
3. Make a “toilet paper only” rule
Toilet clogs are one of the most common plumbing nightmares, and they’re often caused by things being flushed that shouldn’t be (e.g., anything that isn’t toilet paper or waste). Paper towels, pads, cleaning wipes and cotton balls are a few common culprits often found in damaged toilets, so if you’re planning to have overnight guests, there’s a chance somebody won’t follow the “toilet paper only” rule. With that in mind, consider posting a bathroom sign reminding your guests about what not to flush — and make sure you have an adequately sized wastebasket for them to dispose non-flushable items properly!
4. Repair leaky faucets
Your home has many faucets—in the kitchen, bathrooms, laundry room and maybe even the garage. A faucet that leaks or drips is not only annoying for guests to listen to, but it also can increase your water bill—especially if multiple faucets are leaking—and potentially cause substantial damage to your home’s plumbing. Whether the leak is due to corrosion, defective parts or mineral deposits, it’s crucial to find a solution or hire a professional to take care of it.
5. Check your water heater
Did you get your water heater checked this year? If not, your guests may not enjoy the hottest showers during their visit. Before your guests arrive, schedule an appointment with an HVAC professional like Barlow Service Experts if you haven’t done so recently. And if your water heater is more than a decade old, consider shopping for a newer one that’s more energy efficient. Be sure to also wait at least 15 minutes between showers so that hot water is adequately replenished.
If you’re encountering signs of a clog, leak or water heater issue—or if you want to schedule a tune-up to prevent these common holiday issues, Barlow Service Experts is here to help. Schedule your appointment today to take advantage of their holiday promotion so you can save even more and focus on enjoying the holiday season.
Source: GET Creative, a division of USA TODAY