Formerly Jim's Plumbing

What Shouldn't Go Down Your Kitchen Sink?

It is always tempting to dispose of your kitchen waste down the sink. But what is the real cost of your laziness?

It is important to remember that the food waste you put down your kitchen sink has to pass through your pipes and drains, leaving only a matter of time before they eventually become clogged. Food waste is not only harmful because of its size but also because of the chemicals it can contain.

Below we take a look at some trash that should never go down your kitchen sink drain.

Eggshells: The shells themselves may seem harmless, but when you wash them down your drain, they have the potential to get stuck in other substances and create a thick mess which can easily lead to a blockage.

Flour: Remember what happens when starchy foods like pasta and flour get mixed with water? Now picture that in your kitchen drain. Your water flow is not enough to stop this sticky mess from infiltrating your drains and causing a blockage. It also has the potential to gather other debris and cause a monumental blockage.

Grease: Have you ever seen what happens when grease cools down? It builds up into a thick clumpy mess – now imagine that in your drains. If you frequently pour grease or oil down your kitchen sink, the possibility of a blockage increases substantially. To properly dispose of grease, you can attach a grease trap to your sink or wait until it cools down and then put it in your rubbish bin.

Milk: Why shouldn’t milk be disposed of down the kitchen sink when it is a liquid? It is important to consider the impact milk can have on the environment rather than your drains in this instance.

Like all dairy products, milk is considered a high-polluting substance due to its high oxygen demand. In the United Kingdom, it is a criminal offence to dispose of dairy products down your drain.

Coffee Grounds: How do you dispose of your coffee grounds? Hopefully not through your kitchen sink! Coffee grounds have the potential to build up, stick together and cause a blockage in your kitchen sink. You can even use coffee grounds as part of your compost for an environmentally safe option.

Safe Alternative Disposal Methods

To avoid the detrimental impacts of washing unsuitable materials down your sink, here are safe alternative disposal methods:

  • Composting: A compost bin is an excellent way to recycle coffee grounds and other biodegradable food waste, turning them into nutrition for your plants rather than a hazard for your kitchen drain.
  • Grease traps: Installing a grease trap or simply waiting for grease to cool and solidify before disposing of it in the trash can prevent the accumulation of greasy deposits in your pipes.
  • Rubbish bin: Items that absorb liquid, like flour and eggshells, belong in the bin. Wrap absorbent materials around liquid waste that’s unsuitable for the drain to prevent spills and leaks.
  • Special collection services: Utilise special collection services for the disposal of dairy products and any other highly polluting substance to ensure they don’t contaminate the water supply and environment.

As with most things in our day-to-day lives, prevention is always better than cure. By applying these tools and methods, you can minimise the risk of blocked drains in your home.

Dealing with Blockages

If blockages do occur, here are some steps to remedy the situation:

  • Boiling Water: This can sometimes dissolve soap or grease blockages. However, do not pour boiling water if you have PVC pipes, as it could cause damage.
  • Plunger: A common first step in dislodging blockages, make sure to create a good seal around the plunger for the most effective use.
  • Natural Cleaners: A mixture of baking soda and vinegar can work wonders on a clogged sink, followed by flushing with hot water after the solution has had time to work.
  • Chemical Cleaners: If natural methods fail, chemical cleaners are available but should be used as a last resort due to their harsh nature.
  • Professional Help: Persistent blockages may require the expertise of a licensed plumber to resolve without causing further damage.

What If I Have A Garbage Disposal?

Having a garbage disposal in your kitchen sink may lull you into a false sense of security when it comes to food waste. You might think that you can safely dispose of just about anything as the garbage disposal will take care of it. Think again.

Even with this appliance, disposing of certain materials like eggshells, coffee grounds, grease, and flour can still be problematic and lead to blocked drains. These substances can still accumulate and cause clogs further down the plumbing system, where the disposal’s reach ends. While a disposal unit grinds food scraps into smaller pieces, it doesn’t prevent fats and oils from solidifying or coffee grounds and flour from clumping together, ultimately leading to potential blockages. Therefore, irrespective of your garbage disposal, it’s best to use alternative disposal methods for these materials.

Contact The Kitchen Sink Drain Specialists

Need help with a blocked drain? Contact Plumber Near Me for assistance. Our team is equipped to handle all your kitchen sink woes, ensuring that your drains stay clear and your plumbing system remains in top condition.

Being proactive about what you put down your kitchen sink and how you dispose of waste can significantly reduce the risk of blockages. But, when issues do arise with kitchen sinks, knowing how to respond promptly can prevent minor issues from escalating into major plumbing disasters.

Need help with a blocked drain? Contact Plumber Near Me for help.

Please note: This information is provided for advice purposes only. Regulations differ from state to state, so please consult your local authorities or an industry professional before proceeding with any work. See our Terms & Conditions here.