Quick, easy tips to get your plumbing ready for the holidays
So, you’re anticipating out-of-town guests for the holidays, and you’ve got friends and family who live close by coming over, too. It must be holiday season, and while it’s a joyful time of the year, it’s also one of the most taxing for your home’s plumbing.
Make sure your plumbing is ready for the busy weeks ahead with the tips below. With a little planning, you can focus your attention on the things that matter the most – spending time with loved ones.
Do a thorough cleaning. This isn’t just to make everything look great, but to help the bathroom and kitchen fixtures work great, too. We recommend using a vinegar and water solution to clean everything from your kitchen faucets to your shower heads.
That’s because the vinegar will remove any build up, which then allows water to flow freer. Of course, we know vinegar isn’t a favorite smell, but you can always follow the cleaning with a lighted candle or open a window.
Protect the drains. Your plumbing is going to work overtime if guests are over using sinks, tubs and showers, and that means drains will be prone to build up. Invest in inexpensive drain strainers to catch things like hair to prevent clogs in the bathroom.
Protect kitchen drains by not pouring cooking oils and grease down them. Instead, pour the grease or other fat substance in an aluminum can, wait until the fat has hardened, and then throw away. You can also help your drain (and garbage disposal) by not putting bones, vegetable rinds, and anything else that’s fibrous down them.
Add extra garbage bins. In the kitchen, have an extra garbage bin around for those bones and rinds so you can save the disposal. And in the bathroom, make sure there’s an extra garbage bin on hand so your guests aren’t tempted to flush items down the toilet or the sink.
Change the toilet flapper. The flapper is a hard-working is a plug-like device located at the bottom of the tank that is prone to malfunctioning and breaking from overuse, which can cause leaks that can lead to higher water bills. Since the toilet will be working overtime during the holidays, why not check the toilet flapper and fix by purchasing a new one at a home improvement store, or by calling a professional plumber?
Check the hot water heater. It would be a real disappointment to leave your guests lukewarm water for showers. Avoid that by doing a thorough check of your hot water heater before they arrive. Look to see if there are any leaks coming from the base or anywhere else. If there are, contact a professional plumber for a repair.
Consider turning the hot water heater up as high as it can go (not to exceed 120 degrees Fahrenheit), and remember to turn it down when your guests leave. And, if you’re worried you don’t have a large enough hot water heater for guests, perhaps it’s time to invest in a tankless hot water heater. Now that’s a nice gift!
Know your home’s plumbing. In the event of a major leak, you’ll need to know where your home’s shut off valves are located. Also, make sure you have plungers, snakes and the phone number of a professional plumber on hand in case you need extra help.
By following these quick tips, you’ll be able to rest easy while your plumbing works hard. That way, you can enjoy the fun ahead.