Just because you can flush it down a drain doesn’t mean you should. This new year, make a resolution to protect our waterways by properly disposing of these common items.
Fats, oils and greaseThese culprits come from meats, butters, margarine, lard, food scraps, sauces, salad dressings, dairy products and cooking oil. When you pour these things down your drain (yes, even if you use a garbage disposal!), the grease can harden and cause sewer pipes to clog. These clogs trigger overflows of the sanitary sewer system, forcing raw sewage to back up into your home, lawn, neighborhood and streets.
MedicationsIf you put medicines such as prescription pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter medications (antibiotics, antidepressants, vitamins, cough syrup, or pain medications) down the drain or into the toilet, they end in the water supply because water treatment processes can't completely remove them.
While it's okay for small amount of household chemicals to go down the drain – no more than about a cup – large amounts of chemicals should never be disposed of in your drain! Bleach, disinfectants, degreasers, and other household cleaners are difficult to extract from water at the wastewater treatment plants, and they can also be harmful to workers and the environment.
Paints, Pool and Lawn Chemicals
Leftover paint, insecticides, herbicides, fertilizer, and other household hazardous wastes can be hazardous, and should never be disposed of through your drains! These chemicals are difficult and expensive to remove from the water and could damage your pipes.
Pet waste is not only smelly and unsightly, but it is a health risk to pets and people, and creates water quality issues too.