Mythbusting Common Plumbing Beliefs

2022 09 Wolcott Blog 1

There are many myths floating out there in the plumbing world. Some of them have been passed around the neighborhood for so many years that maybe even you still think they are true! We’re here to set the record straight on a few of those myths. Read on to test your knowledge of the plumbing system and see if you’ve been committing a plumbing faux pas.

Myth # 1: Hand Washing Dishes Saves You on Water

FALSE: This commonly prevailing myth is simply not true. Dishwashers, and especially today’s highly efficient dishwashers, are able to clean your dishes with much less water than the typical person uses to hand wash their dishes. And BONUS myth, it’s also not true that you should rinse your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. Many detergents work by grabbing onto the food residue so if you wash it all off there’s nothing for the soap to work on! So DO scrape off the big pieces of food but leave the rest for the dishwasher, that’s its job!

Myth # 2: It’s Okay to Pour Grease Down the Sink as Long as it’s Hot

FALSE: Big no-no on this one! Pouring hot grease down the sink even if you run it with hot water will only lead to clogs in the future. Once that hot grease hits the cold metal of your pipes it will immediately cool and start to coagulate in your pipes. We’re always here to lend a helping hand so if you feel like trying this “tip” out we’re just one service call away to unclog you.

Myth # 3: Baking Soda Helps De-stink Your Drains

TRUE: Drains are funky places. Even when you are careful about what goes down the drain, eventually the food and soap particles will build up and start to smell. To combat this, sprinkle some baking soda into the drain, let it sit for at least 30 minutes, and then flush with either a cup of vinegar or hot water. This helps to freshen the smell and clean out your drains!

Myth # 4: Put Lemons Down the Garbage Disposal to Freshen Up

FALSE: Similar to the baking soda, this trick is supposed to clear up the smell in your sink. In this case we DO NOT recommend following this. A whole lemon (or large lemon pieces) are more likely to clog up your disposal than they are to help. Disposals are not meant to tackle large items, so if you would like to make your kitchen smell citrusy we suggest using lemon juice instead. But don’t leave it on your disposal too long because the acidity may eventually corrode the metal. Honestly your best bet for a lemon scented kitchen is some citrus room spray or a candle!

Myth # 5: Flushable Wipes are Okay to Flush

FALSE: We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. NOTHING other than toilet paper (and well the usual suspects) should be flushed down the toilet. “Flushable” wipes, even though they are marked as such, are not compatible with the sewer system. They might flush down but they don’t dissolve like toilet paper and will cause large backups in the sewer system. Do yourself and the plumbing system a favor and don’t flush any wipes, feminine products, or anything other than toilet paper!

Myth # 6: Pipes Only Freeze If the Heat Is Off

FALSE: It’s warm now but as we head into the Fall and winter seasons frozen pipes are a big headache. You might assume that indoor pipes can only freeze when your heat goes out but turns out that’s another myth. Pipes that run through exterior walls without much insulation or in areas like basements and attics that aren’t insulated can freeze even if your heat is on. Make sure you are monitoring your pipes carefully once the temperature drops. Doing things like leaving cabinet doors open to allow warmer air flow can help to keep the pipes warmer and avoid this issue.

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