We get it, you may have heard it’s OK to pour grease down the drain.
And, if you cook quite a bit, you may be tempted by the convenience. But this is poor advice and a recipe for clogged drains, pipes and other plumbing complications that can go beyond your home.
It’s never OK to pour fats, oils, or grease (FOG) down the drain.
So, let’s look at why it’s an issue and what steps you can take to keep your plumbing system running smoothly.
What’s the problem with pouring grease down the drain?
The problem is that fats, oils and grease congeal in your pipes, which leads to clogs and blockages.
The grease eventually solidifies and sticks to the pipe walls. Other bits of food start to adhere to that sticky, congealed layer, causing clogs to form.
Things may seem ok now, and you may not think that what goes down your drain is enough to make a difference.
But the build-up process happens over time. So, if you’ve been pouring grease down the drain, no matter how small the amount, you’re contributing to a potential blockage. That blockage may require a plumber.
Plumbing complications aren’t restricted to your home, either.
What other complications are there to pouring grease down the drain?
Fats, oils and grease that make their way beyond the pipes in your home get into public sewer systems.
The complication here is that the fats, oils and grease from your home adds to the FOG from other homes and/or businesses in the public sewer, which turns into large formations called ‘fatbergs’.
A fatberg is what it sounds like: A large mass of fat and solid waste that collects in a sewer system.
A fatberg is a combination of the fats, oils and grease that have been poured down the drain and all the non-biodegradable items that have been flushed down the toilet. Yes, pretty nasty.
Ultimately, the fatbergs in a sewer system can block drainage from homes and businesses, causing serious sewer backups.
Not to mention the time, effort, and expense it takes to have them removed.
What can you do differently to keep your pipes and drains in good shape?
Here are a few basic Dos and Don’ts to help you protect your home’s drainage system, and the sewer system at large:
- Don’t pour any type of cooking fats, oils or grease down the drain. Not even with hot water, not even with a garbage disposal. Just don’t.
- Do put fats, oils, and grease into a sealed container – like a jar or a tin – and toss directly into the trash.
- Do allow fats, oils, grease to cool and solidify before handling so it’s easier to wipe and collect from cooking pans before cleaning.
- Do wipe down all pots, pans, dishes before they get rinsed in the sink and/or put in the dishwasher.
- Do inform your household and get everyone on board.
- Do schedule a routine plumbing maintenance service with us to clear potential blockages.
Yes, this may call for an extra step or two during kitchen clean-up time. But think of the inconvenience, headache, and plumbing bill you’ll avoid down the road. Plus you’ll be doing your part to prevent greater sewer problems.
If you’re worried about existing damage or suspect a blockage, we’re here to help!
Call our office today: 770-692-4138