The day after Thanksgiving is busy for plumbers, so here’s how to avoid the messy call


“It’s usually the busiest time of the year.”

The day after Thanksgiving is the busiest day for plumbers.

DAYTON, Ohio – Holiday sales come every year after Thanksgiving. And so do the calls to a plumber.

“It’s usually the busiest time of the year,” said Wesley Swearingen, head of the drainage department at Korrect Plumbing, which serves the Dayton region.

Lubricate the drain, extra guests use the bathroom and more can all cause plumbing problems and lead to the predictable annual increase in calls for professional help.

Roto-Rooter reports that the company typically sees a 50 percent increase in call volume over an average Friday and a 21 percent increase in business over any other four-day weekend period.

“Extra guests means more flushes, showers, dishes and laundry, all of which greatly increase the chance of a plumbing or drain failure,” said Paul Abrams, a spokesman for Roto-Rooters.

There are ways to prevent problems. First, do not pour grease and gravy down the drain.

“It’s just putting grease down the drain and it will cling to your pipes,” Swearingen said.

He also advises people to clean their drains and disposal before Thanksgiving. Discarding ice cubes is a cheap and easy way to clean the knives as a preventative maintenance practice.

He also recommends using drain care products with enzymes that are safe for plumbing and introducing bacteria to help keep it clean. Drainage products with enzymes are a process, not something that works overnight, he said.

“Drains are like arteries, and everything that goes down is like cholesterol,” Swearingen said. “Over time, they end up accumulating on the walls of the pipe, limiting the pipe.”

Along with cleaning before the holiday, he recommends treating your drain afterwards to prevent accumulation.

The swearing also said that foods high in fiber sometimes seem to have trouble going down the drain even with the disposal, so the key is plenty of water before turning on the disposal. Once the disposal is off, still run the water to ensure that the food can reach its destination.

Swearingen said one of the most important things to remember is to get your water running before adding food and running the disposal.

“You have to have your river running before you add any boats,” he said. He also said putting in small amounts at a time, he said.

6 tips to avoid plumbing and drainage problems during the Thanksgiving weekend:

  • Do not pour grease or cooking oil into drains. They solidify in pipes and suffocate drains.
  • Keep potato peelings, poultry skins, bones, rice and pasta away from the bin.
  • Make sure the disposal is running when you drop leftover food.
  • Do not flush wet wipes down toilets. Most will not dissolve and they will clog the pipes.
  • Place a stamp in the guest bathrooms to save your guests the embarrassment of asking for one.
  • Spread showers and laundry.

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