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How to Avoid Thanksgiving Plumbing Disasters (Because A Dry Turkey Is Bad Enough!)

You would never make any of these plumbing mistakes… would you?

With the COVID-19 pandemic coloring our upcoming holiday gatherings, some folks may feel that Thanksgiving is already a disaster. That’s one way to look at it. Here’s another: You’re less likely to be subjected to Great-Aunt Margie’s “creative” gelatin-and-mini-marshmallow dessert. So, silver lining there.

But even if your Thanksgiving feast looks smaller or feels different than years past, there’s still the traditional element of surprise, with mini crises lurking around the corner. Fun! While we can’t magically expand your oven or help you pick a perfect wine, plumbing disasters don’t have to be on the agenda. Here are the most common ways your pipes can be put under stress during the holidays. Avoid these mistakes, and you’ll be enjoying your third slice of pie in peace. Oh — and a moderately-priced Pinot Noir will go well with turkey and just about every other side dish.

Keep Grease Away From The Drains

We don’t have to tell you this one, do we? Never pour grease, such as turkey drippings, bacon fat, melted butter, or oil down your drains. This could cause an immediate clog, but even if it doesn’t, it will slowly coat your pipes over time, making them slow to drain. Instead, collect hot spent grease in old jars or heat-proof containers, then throw away in the trash once they’re solidified. You can also make gravy!

Don’t Overwork Your Garbage Disposal

Garbage disposals are great, aren’t they? But just like all of your home appliances, they can become overheated and prone to breaking down with overuse. Be discerning about what you pulverize in the disposal. If you have an at-home composting system, Thanksgiving is a great time to use it, instead of putting everything in the disposal. You can also save vegetable scraps and peels to make stock with your turkey carcass on the day after Thanksgiving. Never put bones in the garbage disposal; even if the machine does the job, it will ultimately tax and place undue stress on it over time.

Don’t Flush Problem Items Down The Toilet
You know not to flush tissues or other hygiene items down your toilets. But does Aunt Margie? If you’re hosting guests, your plumbing system will already be taxed beyond its typical capacity. Don’t compound the problem by loading your pipes with foreign objects. Keep trash cans in view — if you typically store yours under the sink, you can simply place it next to the toilet). A polite handwritten sign reminding guests to only flush T.P. works wonders. And, it’s classy!

Perform Mini DIY Plumbing Maintenance Throughout The Week

In the days leading up to Thanksgiving, as you prepare the stuffing and make the pies, be mindful of keeping your sinks and disposals in fighting shape. Pouring a kettleful of hot water down a slow drain is a bit of old cottage cooking wisdom that really works. Get rid of phantom smells by chopping up a lemon and running that through the garbage disposal. And for goodness’ sake, call a local plumber before the big day if you suspect greater issues afoot.

The one thing you can count on during the holidays is that not everything will go according to plan. Work slowly, cook mindfully, and maintain open lines of communication, and your pipes will keep working from the relish tray all the way to the dessert table. (Come to think of it, that’s pretty good advice for life in general.) If you are faced with a Thanksgiving plumbing disaster, take a deep breath and call your local plumber. We’re here to help, and we’re thankful for your business.

Contact Blanton’s Air at (910) 822-2866 for all your Fayetteville or Raleigh, NC HVAC and plumbing needs.