Top 5 Thanksgiving Drain Tips


(Editor’s Note this article was originally posted in November 2015.  However, it has been updated to include current information and tips.)

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the holiday. While many of us are looking forward to the food and festivities, there’s something very important that gets overlooked until it’s time to clean up… your drains.

Did you know that Black Friday is a very busy day for plumbers across the country? Many people experience clogged drains and backups over the holiday.
We’ve put together some helpful tips to help you avoid drain disasters this holiday weekend.

1. Don’t use your garbage disposal as a trashcan

Make sure to properly dispose of all food waste in the garbage can. Disposals are good for small debris left on the plate but are not intended for the cleanup of the whole meal.

2. Send small amounts of food through the disposal at a time

Always run cold water while using the disposal. Make sure to continue to run water for 60 seconds after using the disposal to aid in moving the food through the drains.

3. Never dump grease directly down your drain.

Pour grease into a disposable container then throw in the garbage. You can pour hot grease in a plastic container by leaving a metal spoon in the container, the metal absorbs the heat so the plastic won’t melt.

4. Scrape off food into the trash first

Make sure that dishes are cleaned off into the garbage can before washing in the sink or dishwasher, the less that goes into the drain, the less likely you will have backup.

5. Be prepared

If you frequently have backups and clogs, make sure to have your drains cleaned before having guests over for the holidays. You don’t want to have to call out a plumber on a holiday when most companies are charging overtime rates.

Most backups on Thanksgiving are resulting from improper use: potato peelings through the disposal, pouring grease down the drains, flushing the napkins or paper towels down the drain. If your main drain line has tree roots or integrity problems, avoid inviting a large amount of people to your home. Most people are aware of these problems before the holidays but never take the initiative to perform preventive maintenance on the drain line. Preventive maintenance and use of bacterial enzymes or Root-x will make the difference of getting through the holidays and enjoying your family and having to call out the plumber while you have a full house.