With the holidays right around the corner, plumbing is probably at the back of your mind. You’ve got flights to plan, calls to make, and dozens of other tasks to complete before you finally have time for plumbing.

However, you understand how important it is to prevent embarrassing accidents as you invite company over for the holidays. You only get to see your extended family a few times a year, so you want to make the best impression possible and offer a comfortable and cozy environment.

For this reason, we’ll go through exactly how to prepare your home plumbing for the Holiday season.

Plumbing Tips to Prevent Holiday Disasters

The best way to prevent plumbing accidents during the Holiday season is to hire an expert to inspect your home and fix all detected issues. Unless you have extensive experience fixing leaky faucets, cleaning your drains, or repairing toilets, it’s a good idea to get help from a professional.

However, you can follow these simple tips to keep everyone in your home happy, safe, and dry.

The Bathroom Is a Safe Haven

When people visit the restroom, they are looking for a moment of privacy to take care of their business and then leave without any obstacles.

Your toilets will be subjected to the most traffic of any plumbing equipment during the holidays, so it’s essential to prevent any mishaps. One typical toilet problem is when the toilet doesn’t flush because the chain in the upper tank gets disconnected from the flapper. 

If you’ve ever experienced any flushing issues with your toilet, make sure to examine the problem and replace the parts so it doesn’t happen again, or better yet, call a plumber for a permanent solution.

Furthermore, you should always keep a plunger in your bathroom. Most individuals know how to unclog a toilet but are left in a horrible situation if there’s no plunger present.

Nobody wants to be the person who asks the homeowner for help in the bathroom because of a clogged toilet. So keep a plunger present in each bathroom.

Lastly, keep the bathroom well-stocked with toilet paper, hand soap, and towels. However, make sure that the toilet paper is easily broken down and not too thick. This approach will help prevent clogs if anybody uses too much paper without flushing in between.

If your home needs a toilet repair in Bellevue, WA, before the Holidays, make sure to call Steve’s Plumbing today.

Respect Your Kitchen Sink 

While eating amazing home-cooked food is the best part of the Holiday season, the actual preparation is usually burdensome. For this reason, it’s essential to practice good habits in the kitchen and prepare for any potential incidents.

First, check your kitchen faucet and see if you notice any leaks. The faucet will be heavily used when friends and family arrive, and any current issues will be intensified. 

We recommend installing a new faucet if your existing faucet is on its last legs. The holidays are a great time to upgrade your appliances and show your new gear off to your family.

If you need help fixing leaky faucets, call our expert team at Steve’s Plumbing today.

You Put What Down the Garbage Disposal?

Next, it’s important to remember what’s safe to put down a garbage disposal. 

Although the exact items that are safe depend on how much horsepower your disposal has, here are some basic guidelines to follow.

Safe to put in the garbage disposal:

  • Bread
  • Cold water
  • Small scraps of food
  • Cooked meat and vegetables
  • Eggshells
  • Ice cubes

Do not put these items in the garbage disposal:

  • Bones and fruit pits
  • Grease, oil, and greasy food
  • Pasta and rice
  • Stringy vegetables
  • Fruit and vegetable peels
  • Glass, plastic, banana peels, and onion skins

Putting the wrong items in your garbage disposal can cause blade damage and clogs. This damage can lead to costly replacements and repairs if the wrong things are continually put inside the garbage disposal. 

Furthermore, if you’re having issues with foul odors coming from your garbage disposal, you probably didn’t use enough water to flush everything out. Make sure you allow enough time for everything to get shredded and flushed out with water. Any leftover particles will cause smells.

Then, make sure to clean your garbage disposal once a week by scrubbing inside the disposal with a bottle brush. 

If odors are still lingering, you can put BioOne Drain Maid in the garbage disposal and turn it on so it gets distributed in the disposal and let it sit overnight so it has a chance to get to work and eat through all the odor causing bits in the disposal.  If you’re out of Drain Maid, give us a call, we will send a plumber over to drop some off.

Use a Dedicated Food Scraps Bin

Since people often throw food into the garbage disposal despite being warned, it’s a good idea to have a dedicated food scraps bin. Simply label a garbage can with the words “Food Scraps” and place it near your sink. Make sure it’s easily visible and readable.

We recommend making sure the food scraps bin is large enough to support the number of people in your home during the holidays. If not, make sure to take out the trash and replace the bag once it’s full.

Why Is There So Much Hair in My Drain?

Clogged drains are inevitable if you have your entire extended family using the same shower. For this reason, we recommend placing a mesh strainer over the shower drain to catch any fallen hair. 

Furthermore, you may want to consider placing strainers in your bathroom sinks to prevent clogs in there as well.

However, if your drain is already clogged before the Holidays even begin, we offer cost-effective and customer-first drain cleaning services at Steve’s Plumbing in Bellevue, Wa. 

Contact us today, and we’ll clear your clogged drain and offer you in-person advice on how you can get your specific home ready for the Holiday season.

Who Used All the Hot Water?

What’s worse than water not flowing down the shower drain is no hot water at all. This issue can be a huge problem as many homes face below-freezing temperatures during the Holiday season. 

Furthermore, playing rock-paper-scissors for the first shower is an unpleasant way to treat your guests.

Check your temperature or pressure relief valve and make sure it’s operating correctly. You can do this by placing a bucket to catch the water and then opening up the valve on your water heater. Hot water should flow out at a regular rate. If there are valve drips or spewing, there’s likely a problem.

Next, you should check to see if your anode rod has been replaced recently. Anode rods corrode so your tank doesn’t, allowing your water heater to perform efficiently. If the rod is too old, pieces of it can begin breaking off into the tank and can damage the lining. 

In addition, we recommend flushing your water heater tank once a year. Sediment and rust deposits lead to inefficient systems, so take the time to flush your tank as you examine your anode rod. Or have your plumbers do it for you. 

For most standard tank-based water heaters, it’s recommended to wait 10 to 15 minutes in between showers to allow the heater to reset. 

If your water heater has been struggling and is outdated, it may be time to consider installing a new one. Tankless water heaters provide instant and steady hot water that allow hot shower after hot shower without any downtime. 

Steve’s Plumbing will examine your current water heater and offer you the best option based on your budget and preferences. 

Don’t Forget About Your Freezing Pipes

As you’re mainly focused on the inside of your home, it’s common to forget about your home’s outside faucets. Your home’s outdoor plumbing could be approaching its breaking point if temperatures are below freezing. 

To prevent this from happening, we recommend insulating your exposed pipes with wraps or sleeves. Furthermore, using a freezeless outdoor faucet prevents water from remaining inside the tap to reduce the chance of a burst pipe.

If you choose not to replace your hose bibbs, you can also easily install a freeze cap or hose bibb insulator to protect existing outdoor faucets.

It’s also a good idea to completely drain your pipes if you live in a colder area. This tactic prevents any water that’s stuck inside the lines from freezing and causing a burst. Find your main water supply shut-off valve and turn off your water. Then, turn on the faucets to drain out the pipes.  Always disconnect your hoses and put them away for the winter season.

You should always practice this technique if you’re leaving your home for an extended period during the winter season.

Count on Steve’s Plumbing During the Holidays

As you know, maintaining your home’s plumbing is a permanent ongoing task that requires consistent effort. However, you can take a load off of your back this Holiday season and give your home the treatment it deserves by calling on our plumbing experts today. 

In Bellevue, WA, Steve’s Plumbing specializes in fixing leaky faucets, drain cleaning, toilet repair, and anything else plumbing-related. Since 1995, we’ve been proud to provide excellent service to every home we work in. Enjoy the Holidays with peace of mind by scheduling a pre-holiday plumbing inspection from the quality plumbers in Bellevue.