AKRON, Ohio – It’s the busiest time of year, but not for the reasons you might think.
Jeremy McCoy with H. Jack’s Plumbing & Heating Co. in Akron says that every Black Friday his team is flooded with calls about plumbing nightmares.
The day is so overwhelming, it’s often referred to as “Brown Friday”.
“Everybody’s out shopping and we’re generally cleaning up everyone’s mess,” he said. “We are one of the few companies that actually answer the phone all the time. So we had someone tell us, you know, I called 13 people and no one answered..”
McCoy says most reported problems are usually preventable, but it starts with protecting your pipeline.
“People think their trash is trash, and that’s probably your biggest problem.”
Be sure to scrape off excess grease, oil, and any food residue on any cookware, and toss it in the trash or empty, McCoy says. Though if anything is drifting down the drain, mixing baking soda and vinegar or even ice can help clean it up.
“The best thing you can do is when you’re done with dinner, scrape off your plating and then wash anything small in the sink or in your dishwasher, anything will do,” McCoy explains. . “There are no usable blades. They just banged it around and made it smaller. So people think it’s just eating it, you know? That’s not how it works.”
McCoy says solutions like Drano may not be the best for clogged drains.
“People like to put Drano in things. Please, please don’t. Someone will have to come and open it… Drano doesn’t work. If, Drano worked, none of us would get rid of snakes. So, you know, that’s a big part of our business,” McCoy said. “Plus, if you have older pipes, it will corrode those over time and that’s not a good thing.”
Jennifer Elting of Northeast Ohio Sewer District says try to remember the “FOG” acronym.
“It stands for fat, oil and grease and anything like salad dressing, cheese, milk, butter, obviously cooking oil. You don’t want to run it down your drain. She speaks. “They especially love binding with washable wipes.”
Speaking of washable wipes, McCoy says, “you should never use washable wipes. Just throw out a trash can”.
He added, “It’s easier to wrap a trash bag and take it outside than calling us.”