The Holidays Are Coming: Watch What You Throw Down Your Drain

Posted by Butter Plumbing

drain-repairThanksgiving is just a few weeks away and Christmas is just a short ways behind it. That means you’ll probably be making a lot more food this holiday season, whether it’s a grand family feast or just something a little special for the holidays. Kitchen sinks and appliances like garbage disposals see a lot of use this time of year, and we tend to see a big upswing in repair calls on kitchen pipes and garbage disposals in the weeks surrounding the holidays.

Many of these calls involve clogs in the drains or similar problems caused by inappropriate foods tossed down the drain. We can fix such problems rapidly, and even offer emergency services to take care of them after hours so you don’t need to worry if a problem arises while preparing for a big holiday meal. But we also believe that an ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure, and better than fixing a problem with the drain is avoiding the problem to begin with.

Some Foods Shouldn’t Be Tossed Down the Drain

The easiest preventative measure is simply to monitor which foods you’re preparing and to refrain from throwing some of them down the drain. You probably know enough not to toss down cheery pits, meat bones or other hard objects. Such objects can’t be broken up by the garbage disposal and could cause serious damage, as well as create bad clogs in the pipe itself. Most people throw them in the garbage instead of putting them down the sink.

But that’s not the only kind of food you should watch for. Some are just as bad, either because they create problems for the disposal or because they can form terrible clogs in the drain. As you prepare food this holiday season, keep a sharp eye out for them and toss them in the trash instead of down the drain. They include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Fats, oils, and grease, or FOG as plumbers often refer to them as. They can be deceptively tough to deal with because they’re liquid when hot, but rapidly cool in your pipes to make a sticky clog. You can deal with them by pouring them into an empty can while they’re hot, then throwing the can in the trash when it reaches room temperature.
  • Fibrous vegetables. This includes holiday staples like potato peelings, carrot peelings and celery. They can wrap around the gears in the garbage disposal and cause all kinds of damage. They can also get tangled up with each other in the pipes themselves and make for a terrible clog. Always peel vegetables somewhere other than the sink, or stop up the sink while you work and remove the peelings before you unstop it.
  • Coffee Grounds. Ground coffee can expand when it gets wet, which creates clogs. It can also get caught in the gears of the garbage disposal.

For problems with clogged drains and garbage disposals in Green Valley, NV, call on Butter Plumbing today!

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