Summer and socializing go together. Having friends and family over for a BBQ is a tradition, one that makes for happy memories.
But those extra people can put extra demands on your plumbing, as well as your grill. When you have a crowd, it’s the worst possible time for plumbing and other household crises.
Avoid problems with these 10 quick tips to ensure its all systems go at your summer BBQ.
#1. Trash containers. Set out garbage bins in every bathroom. Your guests will be less tempted to flush the wrong items down the toilet to help avoid drain calls.
It’s also a good idea to put trash containers wherever your guests will gather. Your property stays cleaner when trash is properly collected.
You don’t need to buy special garbage bins. Big buckets and even medium size cardboard boxes will work. Put a sign reading “Trash” on them. This lets people know at glance where to toss garbage.
#2. Grease, fats and oils. Make sure grease doesn’t get into your kitchen drain. Set aside an old can, like those used for soup or beans. Keep it on the kitchen counter and pour all old grease, fats and oils into it.
Grease builds up in the drain, causing it to run slowly. Eventually it will clog completely, requiring an emergency plumbing call.
#3. Food debris. Grease isn’t the only culprit when it comes to clogs. Catch food debris like vegetable peelings and apple cores before they go down the drain.
Use an inexpensive food or hair catcher, available at a home improvement center. Put it in the drain and empty it regularly.
#4. Garbage disposal care. There’s nothing better than BBQ ribs and other grilled meat, often with bones. But don’t put the bones down the garbage disposal. It’s simply not equipped to handle them.
Also keep all types of fibrous, starchy and stringy food out of the disposal, things like celery, citrus rinds, watermelon rinds and fruit pits. They damage blades and choke the drain.
Have guests throw food waste into a recycling bin. Later you can personally decide what goes down the garbage disposal. Before and after you can run the garbage disposal with a few ice cubes and a slice of lemon to clean the unit of any lingering food scraps.
#5 Too much at once. Try to avoid using dishwasher, garbage disposal, and kitchen faucet all at the same time to avoid a back-up from over-use.
#5. Grill outside. Use your barbeque outdoors, never indoors. That’s true whether it uses propane or charcoal.
It can be tempting when the weather goes bad and you have friends over. But the fumes can be lethal. If bad weather is forecast, plan an alternative menu just in case, so you can prepare it safely in your kitchen.
#6. Monitor the grill. Always have someone keeping a careful eye on the barbeque when you’re fixing food. Make it easier on them by keeping the grill a safe distance from branches on the trees and the house.
Have your Chef-in-Charge enforce a 3-foot safe area around the grill. Tell children to keep away from it.
#7. Fuel safety. Check the gas tank hose before you use the grill. Use this simple method: put a mix of soap and water on the hose. Then turn on the tank. If you see bubbles, there’s a leak. Get the grill fixed before using it. Never take chances.
Also check the interior of the grill before you light it. Open the lid and make sure it looks clean.
If you smell gas at any point when grilling, turn it off and get away from it. Keep guests away from it too. This isn’t the time to start tinkering.
#8. Charcoal safety. Only use charcoal starter fluid for a charcoal grill. Resist the temptation to get it going with other ingredients.
After grilling, let the charcoal briquettes cool down before moving them. Then transfer them to a metal can with a lid.
#9. Clean the grill. Whether you use a propane or charcoal grill, always clean it thoroughly after each use. This gets rid of grease, the source of potential fire problems in the future.
#10. Let professionals deal with problems. Call Emory Plumbing, serving San Diego barbecue users since 1944. The team at Emory has years of experience with all types of plumbing problems, as well as air conditioning, ventilation and heating.
Emory also handles professional damage restoration. But follow these tips, and you will stay safe this summer.
When necessary, get expert help from one of our skilled Emory Plumbing technicians. We are here to help 24/7/365. Thank you for choosing the Man in the Yellow Van!