Many times, we throw or pour down things down the drain without even realizing how harmful it can be for both the drain and piping system.
And that’s why such things or food substances later lead to several complications within the drainage and piping system.
Most of the foods that we intake and throw the residues down the drain contain saturated fats, oils, and grease.
But is pouring grease down the drain really a good idea, or it can harm the drainage system?
Let’s clear out this confusion. In this article, I’ll reveal the effects grease can have on the drain. Check it out!
Is It Bad to Pour Grease Down the Drain?
Yes, pouring grease down the drain leads to some major plumbing problems starting from drain clogs even to coat up the drain pipes.
Grease doesn’t only harm the drainage system but has the potential to damage the whole sewage system.
It is one of the largest causes of drain clogs and sewage system malfunctions. It also further narrows down the diameter of the drain pipes gradually by forming build-ups.
How Does Grease Form?
Grease is formed from unsaturated fats and oils of most of the daily food items of our diet. Except for fruits and vegetables, more or less every food item forms grease.
This includes meat, eggshells, coffee, dairy products, and many other basic daily food items. Moreover, fruits and vegetables combined with any kind of cooking oil can form grease too.
Now, if you’re thinking that reducing the disposal of these food items residue will solve the issue for you. Then, that won’t be enough.
Because grease can also be produced from the soaps and detergents made of animal fats that we use to clean our dishes and clothes.
And so, it is challenging to resist grease from building up inside the drain pipes. The least you can do is reduce it to the minimal level.
How Does Grease Affect the Drain?
Grease has a very thick, weird texture for which it is something in the middle of both sticky and slippery. This is the reason why grease does not flow down the drain smoothly.
Interestingly enough, fats and oils from the different fatty foods cling to the walls of the drain pipes. These fats and oils gradually cool down and convert to grease.
With time, more and more grease joins the pipe wall causing a thick coating to form around the internal surface of the walls of the drain pipe.
Moreover, many times due to pouring soap, vinegar, or warm water, the solid grease stuck to the drain pipe walls gets loosened and falls down, accumulating in the bottom of the drain.
The bottom of the drain is generally cooler than the upper portion, for which the grease gets very easily and quickly solidified after reaching there. And then the solid grease floats on water.
While grease keeps on accumulating at the bottom, spontaneously falling off from the pipe walls and getting strong and solid there, it creates a strong layer of solid grease wall within a large area of the pipe bottom.
This completely blocks the waste substances thrown down in the drain to flow away with water to the sewage system.
And that is how to grease build-up creates a massive impact on the drainage and sewage system by blocking the way for the wastes to flow down.
What is the Right Way to Dispose of Grease Residues?
Even though most people prefer to throw the leftover grease residues down the drain because it is much easier and time-saving than any other way of disposing of it, it risks the health of your drain, pipe, and sewage system.
That’s why it is better to dispose of it in the proper way, which will lessen the risks of drain clogs and build-ups throughout the pipe at a massive level.
What you can do is, try to avoid throwing away the residues of foods that have been mentioned here as grease producers in the drain.
Rather dispose of them in the food waste bin. Here, you might have a concern that it will cause your waste bin to smell very bad.
For that, you can wrap these foods with plastic wraps or grocery bags and then throw them away in the food waste bin.
In case, you need to dispose of liquid grease food residues such as milk or oil, you can pour it in a spare non-recyclable can and then throw it in the food waste bin.
When it comes to leftover oils and fats on the surface of the pan after a cook, you can use paper towels to wipe them off. Then, just throw the paper towel in the trash bin.
This might sound like a bit more hassle, but it will save your drain and pipes from great damages. So, do it for the sake of your drainage system and to avoid greater troubles in the future.
How to Recycle Grease Residues?
In case you didn’t know that grease residues from foods can be recycled for further cooking purposes.
All you have to do is pour the leftover oils and grease in a bottle or bowl and cool it down. Don’t pour the hot oil into a plastic bottle or bowl. Use glass or any other material.
But in case you want to pour it in a plastic bottle, make sure you cool it down completely first. And then, refrigerate until using it in the next cook.
Or else, if you’re cooking a lot of dishes one after another, then use the same pan with leftover oils to fry and season food items.
How to Prevent the Formation of Grease Required to Dispose of?
The best possible way to prevent the formation of grease residues after cooking something is by using fewer oils in food and cutting down fatty food items from the regular diet list.
Fats and oils are responsible for forming clots within the drainage pipe and producing cholesterol clots within the arteries of the heart.
This leads to different heart diseases within people and a high risk of a heart attack in aged people. Moreover, fats and oils are also the first and foremost cause of obesity.
That is why it is better to cook food using alternative healthier methods and require less fatty and oily additions.
Such as baking, roasting, broiling, and streaming are cooking techniques that require less amount of oil than other methods.
Again, using vegetable stock or water to boil meats are way healthier substitutes to oil and butter. This small switching of cooking techniques will save you from several health complications as well as drainage system issues.
I hope I could help you with everything you needed to know about pouring grease down the drain.
And it is of no doubt that pouring grease down the drain is one of the worst things you can do to your drains and pipes.
And so, it is essential to reduce this habit of throwing greasy substances down the drain for the betterment of your drainage system.
James is an organic fertilizer professional who owns a successful organic fertilizer company in new jersey. He is an expert in waste management in both houses and community cases. In his free time, he loves to write about his experiences in the field.