When you're in the kitchen and are looking for a way to deal with the grease left in your pan, you may be tempted to just pour it down the sink drain. You might think that it's not a big deal to do this every now and then, especially if it's not a lot of grease. You might have even heard that it's fine to pour grease down your kitchen sink as long as you run the hot water afterward.
Regardless of what you might have heard or done in the past without any obvious problems, this isn't something you should do. Here's why.
1. It Can Cause Serious Plumbing Issues
The first and most important reason why you shouldn't pour grease down your kitchen sink drain is because it can cause some serious plumbing problems that you'd probably rather avoid. First, you have to worry about it clogging up your sink drain itself. If you've ever had trouble getting the water to go down the kitchen sink after pouring grease down it, this is probably what you were dealing with. The grease can clump up and clog the sink drain, causing water to drain slowly or not at all.
If your sink seems to be draining fine, then you might think you’ve avoided the risk. Unfortunately, this is not necessarily the case because grease can accumulate further in the pipes.
A clog might not happen right away, but other things that go down your sink — such as food particles or more cooking grease — can get caught up with this grease. As a result, a clog may develop later, and the clog might be tough to access because it could be deep in your pipes.
Lastly, if you have a septic tank, you should know that your septic tank can be damaged by cooking grease. The grease can affect the balance of chemicals in your septic system and can cause clogs, leading to backups and other problems with your septic tank.
2. It Can Contribute to Odors
No one wants to have a smelly kitchen. After all, this area of the home is where you’re supposed to have an appetite! It's no secret that cooking grease often does not have the best smell. If you pour it down your sink drain, your sink — and therefore your entire kitchen — will smell like cooking grease.
The best way to prevent this odor is to avoid putting cooking grease down your sink drain in the first place. Instead, you can use an old coffee can or a container that is designed just for storing grease. Choose a container that has a tight-sealing lid to block out odors. Just don't pour the grease in when it's still hot unless you use a container that is designed for hot liquids.
3. You Can Reuse It
Lastly, if you're someone who likes to reuse things as much as you can, you should know that grease can often be reused. If you pouring it down the sink each time that you use it, you probably waste a lot.
Bacon grease and grease from other cooked meats can impart a great flavor in future foods. Even regular cooking oil and grease that has been used for things like frying French fries can be used a couple more times before it's thrown away.
For best results, use a cheesecloth and a strainer to drain out any food particles before storing grease. Also, make sure that you throw it out when it gets too old, such as when it develops a rancid smell or when it looks foamy or cloudy.
By reusing grease, you can impart great flavors in some of your foods, and you can save money at the same time.
Dealing with grease is a common problem for any home cook. Pouring it down the sink might seem like a fast solution, but it's not a good one. If you've poured grease down your sink and are dealing with a clog, or if you need help with any of your other plumbing needs, contact us at Moody Plumbing, Inc., to find out how we can help.