Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG) or other prohibited items like
cleaning wipes can cause obstructions in the sanitary sewer
system. These obstructions or debris blockages can cause
wastewater to flow into residences and businesses causing
damage to your home and/or business.
Fat, Oils and Grease
Fat, oils and grease, including cooking oil, are "hydrophobic,"
which means they prefer to cling to surfaces that are free of
Grease will build from the top down in the sewer line. As the
wastewater flows through the sewer line the grease continues to
build restricting the flow of wastewater. Eventually, grease
will form a blockage in the sewer line. In addition to clogging household
and business sewer lines, cooking oil and grease in the
wastewater can cause sewer lift station failures, wastewater
treatment plant problems, and subsequently environmental
Grease is one waste that the sewer system cannot handle and
therefore needs to be kept out of the system.
How to Dispose of Grease and Cooking Oil
It is better to put grease in the garbage instead of the drain.
Used grease and cooking oil can be placed in a jar, coffee can,
or other suitable container. After it has cooled, seal the
container, wrap it in newspaper, then placed it in the household
Waste food products containing fats, cooking oil, or grease can
be placed in a plastic bag or other suitable container and
placed in the household trash instead of through the
Food service establishments require a grease interceptor to
properly remove oil and grease.
Chemicals used to remove sewer clogs flow along the bottom of the
drain pipe. If used frequently, the chemicals can deteriorate
the bottom of the sewer pipe creating problems later for the
homeowner or business.
Detergents, hot water, and chemicals do not remove grease.
They merely allow grease to go into solution (emulsify it). When
the emulsified solution contacts cooler water or piping, the
grease re-coagulates causing problems downstream in the
homeowner's or business's sewer line, the city
sewer main, and at the waste water treatment plant.
Disposable does not always mean flushable. Cleaning wipes and
baby wipes do not dissolve, but they do get stuck in sewer pipes
and sewer pumping equipment.
Be kind to your plumbing. Throw used wipes in the trash. Costs
for hiring a plumber to unclog your private sewer line
typically range from $75 to $350. These costs do not
include the time it takes you to clean up the sewage that may
have backed up or the time spent calling and waiting for a
In addition, kitchen grease, kitty litter, plastic or latex
items, and needles can all clog pipes and should be bagged or
contained and placed in the trash.
What You Can Do
You can help prevent a costly and unsanitary overflow by
following a few simple steps:
Use paper towels to dry wipe
grease and food from pots, pans and plates. Place contents
into a garbage container before washing in sink or
Pour all used cooking oils and
grease into a container to cool and harden. When the
container is full, place the container in a bag to prevent
leakage and put in the garbage.
Use baskets and strainers in
sink drains to catch food scraps and other solids and
dispose of them in the garbage.
Dispose of cleaning and baby
wipes, latex items, and personal hygiene products in the
Pour any cooking oils or grease
into your kitchen sink, bathroom sink, toilet or other drain
Use hot water and soap to wash
grease down the drain, because it will harden in your pipes
or in the sewer down the line and cause a sewer overflow in
your home or business.
Flush baby diapers and baby
wipes in the toilet.
Use the toilet as a wastebasket.
If you have any questions regarding the information of this
notification or require assistance, please call (480) 644-2484.