Your drains are an integral part of your household systems. They generally do their job quietly in the background, often remaining unseen yet effective. However, when things go wrong with the drains you’ll quickly know about it.
In some cases, the issue can be that sewer pipe has been damaged through age or a natural occurrence such as tree roots. That’s why it’s a good idea to use drain cameras to check your drains periodically and let you know about any impending issues.
In most other cases, the issue is a direct result of things that have been never go down your drains when they shouldn’t have been. Here are six things that should never go down the drain:
Your toilet is designed to handle human waste and toilet paper. That’s it. No other product, especially sanitary/personal hygiene products should be put down the drain. These items don’t decompose in the same way as toilet paper and they are likely to stick in the pipes. This will cause a blockage that, if left, can allow wastewater to reverse flow into your home.
That’s a mess and a health hazard you don’t want to deal with.
It may seem acceptable to put food waste down the drain, especially if you have a waste disposal machine. However, the truth is that many foods can slip through the disposal unit and still be big enough to cause a problem in your drains.
Pasta and rice are a particular issue as they stick to the sides of the pipes. This becomes the start of a clog. Although it may take time to become a complete clog, not allowing food waste down the drains will help them to stay clear.
Don’t forget that grease and oil are also big no-nos. These are liquids when warm and potentially will glide through the pipes. But, they cool and become solid, effectively starting a clog in the pipes.
Medications are generally powerful chemicals that can kill various bacteria. They are extremely useful to humans. However, if you have a little left in a bottle you shouldn’t pour it down the drain. The power of the chemicals involved can damage the natural environment.
In fact, medications can often slip through filtration systems, meaning it’s possible they can be in the water coming out of your faucet!
If you need to get rid of solid drugs you can destroy them in vinegar first. But, the best approach in all cases is to drop them off at a medication drop-off point.
Coffee granules are small and seem inconsequential to your plumbing system. However, they will bunch together within the pipes. You will have seen evidence of this in your coffee machine. This bunching can clog the pipes. Coffee granules are also harsh enough that they could damage the interior of the pipes, potentially causing other issues in the future.
Everyone has been there. The sinks are draining slowly and it’s likely a clog is building. You think you can get ahead of the issue by pouring drain unblocker down the drains.
The good news is that it works. The bad news is that the drain unblocker is a powerful chemical and has the ability to damage the inside of your pipes. Ultimately, this can lead to a leak in the pipes and an array of expensive repairs.
In short, there are better ways to unblock drain clogs without using chemicals. A great solution is bicarbonate of soda and vinegar. They react with each other and can clear a blockage in your pipes.
It may seem like common sense but it needs to be said. Motor oil is extremely damaging to the environment. Pouring it down the drain means damaging the infrastructure that supports life. The oil can even infiltrate the water supply and potentially reach your faucet again. This can potentially cause health issues.
It is much better to dispose of the oil in a container and then at the local recycling center. They have the facilities to recycle it properly. That means you’re not damaging the environment and doing your bit to help save the planet.
This list isn’t exhaustive but you simply need to think about what goes down the drain. The best idea is to only allow wastewater, human waste, soap, and toilet paper down it. This will minimise the likelihood of drain damage or clogs and make your life much simpler.