Portland, Oregon, Tops 30 Most ‘Clogged Up’ US Cities

“Brown Friday” is one of the busiest days of the year for plumbers.

November 21, 2023

The Friday after Thanksgiving is known in the plumbing industry as “Brown Friday”—one of the busiest days of the year for plumbers. According to Yelp, in 2022, plumbers received a 99% increase in quote requests on that day compared to Thanksgiving Day. Clogged toilets, leaky pipes, and overflowing dishwashers are just some of the problems plumbers see after the holiday celebration.

In connection with Brown Friday, Yelp has named the top 30 most “clogged up” cities—that is, the cities which rank highest in search interest for plumbing services. In the number one position is Portland, Oregon, which saw an increase of 23% in searches for common plumbing issues during the Brown Friday period in 2022.

Rounding out the rest of the top five were Virginia Beach, Virginia, which saw a 22% increase in plumbing related searches during that same time; Raleigh, North Carolina, which experienced a 21% jump; Indianapolis, Indiana, with a 20% increase; and Jacksonville, Florida, which saw an 18% surge in plumbing related issues.

Yelp also extended the following tips to help ensure having a celebration with fewer plumbing problems:

  • Focus on the kitchen: Usually, the bathroom as viewed as the epicenter of plumbing issues, but because so much time is spent in the kitchen prepping for parties, many issues can occur there due to excessive water use and food scraps in the pipes. Be sure to wipe dishes clean before loading the dishwasher, and use a sink strainer to catch food scraps to prevent clogged drains.
  • Not everything can be flushed: Remind people via signage or notes in the restroom to only flush items that are safe for the drains. If there are multiple restrooms, encourage use of all of them, to cut down on potentially overloading a single toilet.
  • Be conscious of excessive water usage: Drastic increases in water usage during the holidays is one of the main reasons for leaks, overflows, and other plumbing-related issues.
  • Check the weather: Cold temperatures and freezing conditions can make pipe conditions tricky quickly. If the weather is calling for freezing temperatures before a celebration, consider letting faucets drip ever so slightly to keep water circulating and prevent freezing. Also check out Preventing Burst Pipes in Your Facility for more information.

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