Service One's Plumbing Team Explains What NOT to Pour Down the Drain

ServiceOne, one of Orlando’s leading plumbing companies, imparts some simple steps that will help to keep a home's plumbing and pipes in working order.

Online PR News – 27-August-2015 – Orlando, FL – The professionals at ServiceOne, one of Orlando’s leading AC and plumbing companies, wants homeowners to know some simple steps that will help to keep your plumbing functioning properly and pipes in working order.

“Homeowners typically don’t think about a home’s pipes since they behind the scenes quietly gurgling along,” said says said Service One founder and president, Bill Gouty. “However, when something goes wrong with a toilet or faucet the whole house can come to a stop creating a crisis situation.”

To keep a home’s pipes in working order, Gouty explains some plumbing dos and don’ts:

1. DO NOT POUR BLEACH INTO THE PIPES – The idea of regularly pouring bleach down the drains, in order to clean out all the gunk, is an old wives’ tale. Bleach is a powerful, toxic substance that should be used carefully, and pouring it down a drain is not a proper use. Bleach can react with other substances in your pipes, potentially release fumes, and further plug up the system. If you want to clean the drain, DO pour a mixture of vinegar and baking soda to remove residue or gunk that has built up over the past few months. This will also help it to stay fresh and clean without acquiring smells.

2. DO NOT DISPOSE OF GREASE OR OIL DOWN THE DRAIN – Some cooks want to pour cooking oil into the kitchen sink and watch it slither down the drain. This is a very bad idea. Cooking grease does not get broken down, so it builds up over time, even if you only infrequently pour it down your kitchen drain. Grease that does not get broken down by soap hardens and clogs the pipes. Even if it makes it all the way to the sewers, grease can damage the environment by combining with soap-like chemicals, blocking pipes, and causing sewer overflows.

If you must get rid of grease it your sink, DO flush it with cold water, not hot. Cold water solidifies grease into particles, which makes its journey much smoother. Warm water melts the grease or keeps it in a semi-liquid state, which means it will harden when it reaches a cold spot in your pipes. At that point, it’s likely to solidify where it should not and impede drainage.

It’s easy to get rid of leftovers by mashing them down the kitchen sink, but this is one of the worst things you can do to your pipes. Like most other substances, food will accumulate in your drains over time and clog the system. The average garbage disposal cannot effectively shred certain items like meat, which becomes stringy and wraps itself around the blades of the unit. Meat dulls the blades and renders them less able to break down other food items that go in later. DO take food scraps to the garage.

4. DO NOT DISPOSE OF “STARCHY” FOOD DOWN THE DRAIN -- Similarly, starch from rice, pasta, and potato skins makes the blades of the garbage disposal slimy, either rendering them ineffective, or simply clogging them up. Again, DO toss these items into the trash.

5. OTHER THINGS TO NEVER WASH DOWN THE DRAIN -- The following items are also no-no’s: coffee grinds, egg shells, produce stickers, large chunks of garbage, paper towels, flushable cat litter, motor oil, transmission fluids, anti-freeze or other toxic chemicals, and prescription and over-the-counter medications

“Don’t under estimate the value of your pipes and their role in keeping your home running smoothly,” advices Gouty. “If you have any trouble, don’t hesitate to call us at ServiceOne. We have a team of highly qualified plumbers who are available 24/7.”