Is Pouring Grease Down Your Drain a Bad Idea?

Oh Yes, a Very Bad Idea!!

While we doubt if anyone hasn’t heard pouring bacon grease down your drain is a bad idea, we still make a lot of service calls to unclog drains where someone has indeed poured bacon grease down their drain.  A clogged sink isn’t all that can occur from pouring grease down the drain.  Grease that goes down your drain also travels through your pipes and some of it winds up in the sewer system where it meets up with everyone else’s wastewater.  At this point the fats in the grease get broken down into their component parts, fatty acids and glycerol.  These mix with other components found in wastewater forming glob like compounds.  When the water level in sewers rise these globs attach themselves to ceilings of the pipes and form something like a stalactite.  Over time these grow to the point where the pipes become impassable.

The Worst Possible Result

In the worst possible cases, these globs create such a blockage in pipes, sewer lines will actually back up into your home.  That’s when the problem can reach a monumental state.  For people who live in apartment buildings or near areas where there might be a high concentration of restaurants, the problem can get worse.  In the worst-case scenario, entire neighborhoods can experience raw sewage backing into homes, or no one can flush a toilet without it backing up into the home.

What’s the Right Way to Dispose of Grease?

There are a number of responsible ways to deal with the grease left over from cooking.  Here are just a few proven methods and helpful advice that will keep your pipes clean as well as the sewer system.

  • Always let grease sit and cool before attempting to do anything with it
  • Some people will pour the cooled grease in to containers to use later in cooking
  • Line a bowl with foil and pour the grease in to the bowl. Wrap up the grease with the foil and dispose of in the garbage.
  • Before washing your utensils make sure to wipe them as thoroughly as possible with paper towels before washing. Even small quantities of grease over time will cause build ups and potential problems.
  • Some enterprising people mix leftover grease with bird seed and allow it to harden where it can then be hung up or placed in a bird feeder.

If you ever need a professional to resolve clogged pipes in your home or business, call the professionals at The Clean Plumbers for plumbing solutions you can count on.