The last thing you want to be spending your money on this Christmas is an expensive out of hours call from a plumber because of your plumbing. Christmas and New Years always sees an influx of out of hours calls for plumbers because of simple issues that could have been avoided. I’m going to share some ways on how to protect your plumbing this Christmas so you can avoid the stress of fixing an issue that could have been prevented.
How to Protect Your Plumbing at Christmas
1. Have Numbers of Emergency Plumbers on speed dial
Firstly, find numbers of three local plumbers that are offering call outs over Christmas. This exercise doesn’t pre-empt an emergency, but simply helps you be prepared should you find yourself in a crappy situation (pun intended).
2. Supply a bin in the bathroom
Make sure all toilets have a bin so that guests can dispose of sanitary items. I’m surprised by the number of toilets and ensuites at homes that don’t offer a bin. If you don’t offer a bin, guess where your guests will place their items? Prevent a blockage by providing a bin so guests can dispose of unwanted items discreetly.
3. Use your sink strainer when rinsing plates
If you have an old sink, sink strainers can be purchased from a hardware store. Alternatively, place your colander over the sink waste and it will catch the food that you rinse off your plates. Place these scraps into the bin.
4. Don’t pour fats down the sink
Don’t pour fats or oils down your sink as they have the potential to clog your pipes. Place the trays in a place where the oils and fats can solidify and then scrape them into the bin.
5. Check your ORG
Check outside that your ORG is not covered up by leaves or kids toys. An open ORG will allow sewerage to overflow outside, rather than inside your house if the sewer does back up.
6. Locate where to turn the water off to your house
Get knowledgeable about where to turn your water off to your house. In the event of unexpected leak, turn off the water at the meter and ring for a plumber.
7. Beware using a laundry tub or bath as a drink esky
If you are going to use the laundry tub or bath as a drink esky full of ice DON’T put the plug in. The ice will need to melt down the drain. Also, you will be surprised by how many people turn on the tap and don’t anticipate an overflow from the ice. Keep the plug out to avoid an unexpected flood situation. Alternatively, if you want to keep the cold water in the bath/laundry tub leave the plug in, but direct guests to an alternative basin to wash hands so they don’t cause an overflow situation.
8. Buy a plunger
Keep a plunger on hand for simple blockages. If you don’t have a plunger, a mop handle can work just as well outside for the ORG or a toilet waist. For a sink waist, add some dishwasher detergent down the drain, fill the sink and use the palm of your hand to create a plunging action to help ‘unblock’ your sink. A plunger is best for all these circumstances though.
Keep the toilets well stocked with toilet rolls, a toilet brush, toilet spray, toilet cleaner and a diffuser to camouflage any smells.
With that said, I hope you all have the most amazing Christmas Day with your family and friends. If the unexpected happens, just go with the flow and remember you will most likely laugh about it next Christmas.
What steps have you taken to protect your plumbing at Christmas?