Winter Housing Tips
Holidays bring together family, friends and a few plumbing emergencies. Holiday parties mean extra guests – and these extra guests put a serious strain on a home’s plumbing system.
- Never put hard-to-grind, stringy, fibrous waste into the garbage disposer (poultry skins, carrots, celery, pumpkin pulp or banana peels). The disposer can’t sufficiently grind these items and they will clog your sink drain.
- Avoid pouring fats or cooking oils down the drain because liquid fats solidify in the pipes and create clogs. Wipe congealed grease from pots.
- Run cold water down the drain for about 15 seconds before and after using the garbage disposer to flush waste down the main line.
- Turn on the disposer before adding food debris.
- Plan ahead, spread out showers throughout the day; wait 10 minutes between showers rather than taking one right after another.
- Turn up the water heater slightly to retain hot water. To avoid scalding, do not exceed 125°F.
- If shower pressure is weak, pour a cup of vinegar into a plastic bag, place it over the showerhead, and soak. Use a twist tie to hold it in place overnight. In the morning, remove the bag and use an old toothbrush to gently scrub off the mineral deposits to help restore water flow.
- In extreme cold weather, leave kitchen sink hose cabinet open. If dishwasher back is on a outside wall,
take bottom panel off dishwasher. There’s a water line in there that can freeze. Only leave a basement sink drip. Never on the first or upper floor. Safer yet shut water off at main valve. You’ll still be able to flush the toilet. If pipe is frozen in your house, don’t leave for work without shutting that main valve off.