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A clogged drain is every homeowner’s nightmare in New Orleans, LA. They can put your whole household’s plumbing system at risk and put a hole through your wallet in no time.
So, what do you do when you’re staring at a sink full of dirty dishes, a dripping faucet, and that nasty water in the toilet bowl? You give them all a quick rinse down—and then add some Drano or Liquid-Plumr to your shopping list.
But if you want to avoid a future plumbing bill, think twice before pouring anything down your drain again. There are many things even a drain cleaning service tries not to flush or pour down their drains!
Get some knowledge from the experts when you’re unsure of what can and cannot go down your drains. Here are ten household items that should never go down the drain:
1. Dairy Products
Food high in fat can merge with other substances from edibles and soap to harden into blockages along the walls of your drainpipes, which can create more significant problems down the line.
It will have you calling for a drain cleaning service in a matter of months. They don’t just wreak havoc on the surface but can cause leakages and blockages deeper in your pipe system as well.
2. Oil and Grease
Oil and grease may congeal when exposed to cold water, forming a hard plug of gunk that clogs a drain over time. And once it’s down there, it can be challenging to remove from your pipes.
3. Grease Traps from Dishwashers and Sinks
Grease traps removed from dishwashers or sinks during renovation can easily damage garbage disposal if dumped into it. And they really should not go into a septic system either!
If you’re going to keep yours, make sure all traces of food debris are rinsed off before draining the leftover oil down the sink. Or consider switching to a biodegradable trap.
4. Bleach and Ammonia
Both bleach and ammonia can produce hazardous gases when combined with other household cleaners—and they don’t mix well with conventional drain cleaners Drano or Liquid-Plumr either.
However, calling a drain cleaning service is ideal before using any marketed drain cleaning product in New Orleans, LA, as you may be doing more harm than good.
5. Prescribed Fluoride Treatments
The fluoride treatments that dentists apply to your teeth are a form of rat poison intended to kill germs on contact. Even if it’s left in the bottle, do not pour this down the drain! If you have already done so, contact a drain cleaning service immediately.
While it will likely not be toxic once diluted with water, there is no way for you to safely determine just how much toothpaste residue could remain in your sink or toilet after brushing your teeth. As soon as you finish brushing, rinse out the sink and wash your toothbrush.
6. Baking Soda
Baking soda is excellent for all kinds of household cleaning projects but can cause a big problem if it’s poured down the drain: there’s just no telling what kind of damage it could do to your pipes.
When baking soda meets water, it releases carbon dioxide that can form into bubbles—just like in the box when you open it. Over time, these bubbles can erode steel pipes or joints made with iron or lead solder. Get your drains inspected by a drain cleaning professional to ensure permanent damage hasn’t already occurred.
7. Potato Peels
Don’t dump potato peels—or any starchy foods—down the garbage disposal! When they inevitably bind together in a hard clump inside the drainpipe, you’ll have to fish them out by hand—and that could mean unclogging the pipe without using chemicals.
If you’ve already reached the stage where a clogged drain is inevitable, schedule an appointment with a drain cleaning service as soon as possible.
8. Cat Litter
Many people dump kitty litter down their garbage disposals, believing doing so will help sharpen the blades and freshen the air in their home—but this is just not true.
The notion of cat feces being “toxic” only refers to the parasites they may contain—not toxoplasmosis bacteria, which can be killed with proper cooking temperatures. So don’t put kitty litter (or any other kind of similar product) anywhere near your disposal unless you want to risk clogs later on!
9. Fats, Oils, or Grease from Meat Products
The fates of fats, oils, or grease from meat products are sealed once they come into contact with water: they won’t break down like the rest of your trash and will bind together in a solid mass along any pipe through which they pass.
Your drain cleaning service will give specific instructions for the proper disposal method for other types of edible trash that can’t go down your sink disposal. Ask any questions you have before you make an irreversible mistake.
10. Dental Floss
Dental floss should never go down the drain either—it can get tangled and cause other objects (such as hair) to stick to it and form blockages if you’ve already put a significant amount of floss down the drain. You should schedule maintenance with a trusted drain cleaning service if this happens.
- Use cold water when doing dishes. Hot water dissolves fats and grease more quickly, so if you use hot water while washing dishes, these substances will go down the drain faster than you might expect. If something is stuck on your plate or pot, do not let it sit there too long before cleaning it off or rinsing it.
- Do not put coffee grinds or eggshells in the garbage disposal; both can cause clogs. Get a drain cleaning service over if you’ve already put these materials down the drain.
- In New Orleans, LA, the average garbage disposal should be used about every three days to help keep your drain from being clogged with food waste. Cleaning garbage disposal is a relatively simple task which you should do regularly for best results.
- Remember that hazardous materials can go down a drain by mistake, so take care when handling chemicals and follow the directions on their container carefully, especially if you have kids!
Need Help with Your Clogged Drains? Our Technicians Are Here at Your Disposal
Drain clogs can be a result of grease build-up and even the contents of your disposal. If you have tried everything and your drain is still backed up, contact bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of New Orleans for help.
If you find yourself having to call out a plumber because you used something harmful in your sink or disposal, it’s essential to know any damages could be passed on to the plumber as they would need to repair those problems as well unclog your drains.
Call today at 504-229-4848 to set up an appointment for our drain cleaning service!