Putting fats, oils and grease (FOG) down your drain is harmful to your plumbing and the City’s sewer pipes. It can create blockages that cause back-ups into your home and affect the City’s sewer infrastructure.
And no, running hot water with it does not make it okay. The grease hardens in the pipes as it cools and sticks to the pipes causing buildup that over time will block the entire pipe.
Cooking grease coats pipelines similar to the way that fatty foods clog human arteries. The grease clings to the inside of the pipelines, eventually causing complete blockage. Flushing grease down the toilet also causes sewer backups.
- Fats such as butter, margarine, and shortening should go into your green cart as should oils such as salad dressings and sauces.
- Small amounts of grease and cooking oil (from a frying pan for example) can be absorbed with paper towel and put into your kitchen catcher or green cart.
- Alternately, grease/ oil can be placed in a disposable coffee cup and left out to harden or freeze until hardened to avoid spills in your green cart.
- Large amounts of oil (from a deep fryer for example) can be brought to the Eastside Recycle Depot. Look for the container shown in the photo below.
- Do not dispose of cooking grease in your garburator.
Do not dispose of the following items in your sinks or toilets:
- Fat, oil and grease (FOG)
- Disposable diapers, tampons, pads
- Food waste, including from waste disposal units
- Cotton balls and Q-tips
- Plastic items
- Needles and syringes
- Clothing and rags
- Cement and building materials
- Razor blades
- General household and garden waste
- Dead pets and pet waste
Avoid planting trees and shrubs near residential and City sewer pipelines. The continual flow of nutrient filled water found in pipelines attracts tree roots through pipe joints and manholes. The roots eventually grow, causing separation of the pipeline joints or blockages in the pipe.
Rocks, debris, power outages, vandalism, rain and construction are also contributing factors to sewer spills.