1. Cooking Grease – Grease comes in a variety of formats, depending on what you are cooking. When its time for clean up, those few tablespoons full of grease may look harmless in your pan, but resist the urge to send it down the drain. Over time, grease hardens and builds up inside your drain and in your pipes. The more blocked it gets, the less gets through.
2. Coffee Grinds – When cleaning out your coffee pot, its natural to send the small amount of coffee grinds down the drain too. Yet coffee grinds are small, sand like substance that will never dissolve, and therefore run the risk of sticking to other clogging items as they make their way down the drain.
3. Egg Shells – Another common item that is easy to send down the drain is an egg shell. They crumble easily, are small, and its easy to assume they will float away with water. Yet because an egg shell always retains sharp, small pieces, it also runs the risk of mixing with other items in your drain and working together to cause a clog.
4. Pasta or Rice – Pasta and rice are inherently sticky by nature. Place either in a pile on your plate, and in minutes you’ll have a sticky substance you have to work at to move apart. Now imagine that same sticky substance sitting in your drain pipes for an extended period of time, especially in large quantities.
5. Toys – Young children are fascinated by openings and holes. They want to see what things are made of and what happens when you put things into them. From an early age, instruct kids that only a few things go down the train, and be very specific about what goes down each opening.
6. Bath Salts – Bath salts seam harmless. They promise to dissolve in water, giving you a luxurious experience. Yet some are so course, and can even be the size of pebbles, and no matter how long the sit on your tub floor, they simply won’t dissolve. Test first, and only buy salts that truly do dissolve in water.
7. Flushable Wipes – The ads consistently say how we need flushable wipes and that they won’t harm your sewer system. They are wrong. The problem with flushable wipes is you buy them wet, which means they hold up in wet conditions. Standard toilet paper begins to break down the moment it connects with water. Flushable wipes don’t. Which means they can retain their form and cause problems throughout the system, depending on what else is in the pipes.
8. Solvents, Paints, Turpentine, Nail Polish or Remover – Any type of solvent, paint or remover contains harmful chemicals. Not only is there a possibility of having them harm your bowl, they can also cause extensive damage to your entire system, from the drain to the pipes to the sewer. And from there, harm our water supply.
9. Prescription or Over The Counter Medication – Medication is created for a wide variety of reasons. When you flush it down the toilet, most of it dissolves into the water supply. No matter how much processing our water supply goes through, it can never completely eliminate all of the chemicals in the supply. Which means our every day drinking water has the potential for many kinds of things, both good and bad.
10. Motor Oil, Transmission Fluids, Anti-Freeze or Other Chemicals – Working outside, its easy to find things in the garage that you have to dispose of, yet aren’t sure what to do. Why not send it down into your local storm sewer? Remember, all drains from your home wind up in one common place – a recycling center. What enters our water supply stays with our water supply, even in small proportions. To have clean, safe drinking water, we must work to maintain it.