The holidays are often about togetherness, and it can be fun to have a houseful of people for festive gatherings. As delightful as having company is, big groups can be hard on your plumbing. To avoid bringing down the party with a plumbing emergency, learn to care for your system before and during a seasonal get-together.
Holiday Plumbing Dos
Being proactive about your plumbing could help you avoid a headache during your next holiday soiree. Take the following steps before your visitors arrive.
Do Schedule a Drain Inspection
Before inviting guests to your home, make sure your plumbing is up to the task. It’s better to find out about a problem before people arrive than in the middle of their visit.
A plumbing inspection provides an opportunity to catch problems early. If your Naples plumber finds an issue, such as a drain that’s draining slowly, you can have the repairs performed before the party day. That way, your plumbing will be in top shape for your event. Plus, professional cleaning for a slow drain may be more affordable than an emergency call to deal with a sink backup or a major toilet clog.
Do Stock the Bathroom
Plumbing troubles sometimes arise when guests find themselves in embarrassing situations that they’re not sure how to handle. Keeping your washroom well-stocked may help you avoid such troubles.
For one thing, make sure you have plenty of toilet paper accessible. If not, your guests may resort to facial tissues, which aren’t as suitable for flushing. Have an easy-to-spot trash can in the room as well. That way, people are less likely to send their baby wipes or sanitary products down the toilet. You may want to have a household plunger in the room so guests can quickly resolve small clogs independently. Otherwise, they may try flushing again, which could cause the toilet to overflow.
Do Put a Hair Strainer in the Tub or Shower
When guests are staying overnight, your shower may see more use than normal. As the number of people showering goes up, so, too, may the number of stray hairs that make their way down the drain. That can lead to slow plumbing or ankle-deep shower water. A simple hair trap placed over the drain can help catch the strands before they block your pipes. You may want to leave the device in place throughout the year.
In addition, you could set a small strainer over the drain of your kitchen sink. It will trap food particles and keep them from causing clogs in the pipes.
Do Check Your Hot Water Heater
The last thing you want as a host is to be responsible for a guest’s injury. Before visitors come to your house, consider lowering the water heater’s temperature to 125 degrees Fahrenheit or less. Even if you normally set your appliance to a higher temperature, people who aren’t used to such hot water may accidentally scald themselves.
This is especially important if you will have young children visiting. It takes only a few seconds for 140-degree water to burn a small child’s delicate skin. Experts recommend protecting youngsters by selecting a water heater setting that’s between 120 and 125 degrees.
Holiday Plumbing Don’Ts
Not only do you need to do the right things to care for your plumbing, but you also need to stay away from actions that can harm your system. You’ll have better plumbing success this holiday season if you avoid the following situations.
Don’t Put the Wrong Items During the Garbage Disposal
Food is a key component of many festive gatherings. As you prep for guests or begin your cleanup, you can use the garbage disposal to deal with food scraps. While the disposal is handy, you will want to be selective about which items you send down. Not everything is suitable for garbage disposal.
Stringy vegetables, such as celery and corn husks, can get tangled in the mechanism. Starchy items, such as potato peels and pasta, can gum up the system. You should also avoid grease and fat that can solidify and cause blockages. Be careful with hard items, such as fruit pits, meat bones, and nuts. If you aren’t careful with your disposal, you may end up not only with a broken garbage disposal but also with a clogged drain.
Don’t Limit Guests to Only One Bathroom
If your home has multiple bathrooms, invite your houseguests to make use of any of them, even the master bathroom, during your holiday events. Consider tucking your toothbrush out of sight and providing festive soaps so that guests will feel at ease in your personal space.
Opening multiple bathrooms can provide relief if two visitors need to use the facilities at the same time. Plus, spreading out the guests can be good for your plumbing system. While public toilets are designed for constant use, home toilets aren’t. They benefit from breaks now and then. An overused toilet may be more likely to clog. Encouraging your guests to divide their restroom breaks between a few different bathrooms can reduce the strain on a single toilet.
Don’t Shy Away From Plumbing Talk
“Hello, welcome to our home. Let me tell you about the plumbing” might be an awkward greeting. Sometimes, though, it’s worth a moment of awkwardness for the sake of protecting your pipes and drains. Although you don’t have to make a big deal of it, it’s a good idea to inform your guests about the best ways to care for your home. For example, when people start to clean up after the meal, say, “Let’s scrape the plates into the trash can so that we don’t risk overtaxing the garbage disposal.”
If you’re not comfortable having bathroom conversations face-to-face, think about posting a polite sign on the washroom counter: “Please flush only toilet paper. There is a wastebasket next to the sink.”
Don’t Hesitate To Call if You’re in a Jam
When plumbing problems arise during a gathering, you’ll need a quick solution. You might be tempted to try fixing the issue yourself, but you may end up making things worse. Instead, it’s best to rely on professional plumbers who will know the best way to resolve your troubles.
Make sure you know the number of an emergency plumber in the Naples area, such as Plumbing & Cooling Nerds. That way, you’ll be ready to make a call, day or night, to pros who can help. The sooner you phone for service, the sooner your plumbing system will be up and running for your guests.
Plumbing & Cooling Nerds provides expert plumbing care in Naples, Bonita, Cape Coral, Fort Myers, and the surrounding area. Our services include tankless water heater installations, pipe repairs, leak detections, and toilet adjustments. We also do hydrojetting, drain cleaning, and sewer line replacement. Our team includes heating and cooling specialists as well. You can count on us for AC installations, furnace repairs, and heat pump tune-ups. We have won multiple awards, including Angi Super Service and Nextdoor Neighborhood Favorite, and we hold Better Business Bureau accreditation.
For the best plumbing services during the holidays or throughout the year, call Plumbing & Cooling Nerds in Naples.