Family and friends arrive in numbers, and from brunch to supper and beyond, its merriment, laughter, happiness and of course, never to forget, food! In fact, central to the very idea of Thanksgiving is the food which invariably is a mix of items that include turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and cranberry sauce.
While it’s merriment from the word “go”, things can turn ugly, really ugly if households aren’t prepared for it in the right quarters, specifically in the region of the kitchen, toilets and sewer-lines. Most in fact aren’t and this is quiet bluntly corroborated by statics which show that the day after Thanksgiving is an invariable field day for plumbers nation-wide given the number of chocked drains, toilets and overflowing sewers!
On what causes all the overflowing and muck rising to the surface, the reasons include quite a few like:
In the case of kitchens, home owners
- Pouring/ throwing into drains things that congeal, harden and get layered with time like lard, cooking oil, butter, dairy products, fats etc. These should ideally be collected into a separate receptacle and processed with the garbage being taken out daily
- Stuffing leftovers of food like peels, pips, seeds, wastes and rejects into the drain instead of putting them diligently into the waste basket
- Insoluble things like pieces of plastics that find their way into sinks and from there into the sewer
In the case of baths and toilets,
- home owners have too many guests visiting the home which overwhelms the toilet and sewer system when the usage goes way above normal
- Guests or homeowners throw things large in volume and which refuse to break-down and instead, chokes the drains, into the drain/ toilet seat
Besides the above, one of the most common causes for chocking and overflowing of toilets during Thanksgiving is the already compromised state of the drainage. For most home-owners, the adage seems to be that “what can’t be seen” needn’t be treated. That’s till, the “unseen” (or not-to-be-seen) comes right in front of you in all its stinky and putrid form! Sewers get chocked when it isn’t cleaned thoroughly at regular intervals. Kitchen gully trans are know for the sludge build-up and sewers have their own issues with mud, silt and tree-roots which narrow down the diameter of the pipe and obstruct the easy flow of water.
To avoid embarrassment, and that too in the company of near and dear ones, besides the likely loss of things like furniture and fixtures, households need to do the following:
- Scheduled maintenance. Your friendly neighbour plumber may be able to help you chart out the best maintenance schedule which one needs to stick to sincerely. This isn’t ONLY about Thanksgiving. Disaster can occur at any time thought its effect does get highlighted more around this time.
- Jetting of sewer-lines. High-speed jetting and where possible in conjunction with video-shoots of the matter down below can help home owners know exactly what the problem is with the sewer system and get timely help. Jetting could be an option
- Kitchen wastes like oil, lard, butter etc should never be disposed directly into the sewer line ever. Wrap it in tissue and dispose it like food waste and leftovers. But, NEVER directly into the sewer system which even otherwise gets its share of oily stuff that goes when washing dishes.
- Bath and toilets. Instruct everyone, especially children to go easy with the toilet-paper. Though the latter is bio-degradable and dissolves in water, the process takes time and it’s times like Thanksgiving when people come visiting by the truckloads that things go seriously wrong. Being judicious may help.
- Event-specific spring cleaning! It helps when you know the scale of the likely problem, and take care in advance. A “Thanksgiving” cleaning of chock-points can be a great help!
In the end, do remember that festivities are important as they give meaning to life, and a reason to meet, greet, spend time and create positive remembrances. Positive it shall remain for those who care to take care well in advance.