South Boston, MA (PressExposure) November 13, 2008 -- DATELINE: SOUTH BOSTON, MA... The Thanksgiving table groans under the load of traditional dishes, and tummies growl and gurgle in anticipation when, suddenly, this Norman Rockwell scene of tranquility erupts into chaos with the realization that the groans, growls, and gurgles are actually coming from the drain of the kitchen sink...
Guess who's coming to dinner? Your friendly neighborhood plumber! John Wood, founder and CEO of Hub Plumbing & Mechanical in South Boston, MA is well acquainted with this familiar Thanksgiving tableau as he girds himself and his crews for the annual Thanksgiving onslaught.
The long Thanksgiving holiday weekend is the busiest time of the year for a plumber, according to the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association. Why? It's simple explains Wood, "A 1 Â½ inch diameter drain can't be stuffed with the detritus of a Thanksgiving meal without fighting back and literally erupting and overflowing. A garbage disposal can't handle the overload either and often grinds to a halt. More than once we've literally had to cut out eight or nine foot sections of pipe that are packed to the gills with compacted waste."
Wood's colorful descriptions of the sights he has seen should serve as fair warning for Thanksgiving revelers. "Imagine the rich smells and colors of a typical Thanksgiving dinner; then imagine all of those foods mixed together, compacted in your drain, ready to burp back up with the addition of a little water..."
Hub Plumbing and Mechanical's clog busting team is at the ready 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, but if you'd like to avoid a Thanksgiving visit, Wood offers some common sense tips.
â¢ Grease congeals and solidifies, the same way fatty deposits block an artery and cause a heart attack. If you want to avoid a drain attack, pour grease into a tin can and toss the can into the trash after the grease hardens. â¢ A garbage disposal isn't a wood chipper. Turkey bones splinter (that's why you can't feed them to your dog), while turkey skin and fibrous vegetable skins can wind around the blade, causing the disposal to come to a screeching halt. â¢ Always turn on the water before starting the garbage disposal, and keep it running for a minute after turning off the disposal to move the waste through the pipes. â¢ Keep utensils away from the sink if at all possible. There is nothing like a piece of silverware accidentally dropped into a garbage disposal to bring an ear-shattering end to your Thanksgiving festivities. â¢ If you don't have a garbage disposal, the remains of a Thanksgiving feast can present even more perils. Leftover trimmings, including gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, yams, vegetables, and pie need to be scraped off of plates and deposited into the garbage. Rinsing plates and letting clumps of food slide down the drain is a recipe for disaster as food builds up and compacts, firmly clogging the drain. â¢ Also, dishwashers are not garbage disposals. Dishes need to be scraped before they are placed in the dishwasher. Also be careful that the dishwasher isn't overloaded- glasses break easily and a dishwasher drain clogged with glass is a sure fire way of ensuing that you will be washing dishes by hand all evening!