My Home Sewer Line

Best Household Practices for Sewer

The fats, oil and grease found in food ingredients such as meat, cooking oil, shortening, butter, margarine, baked goods, sauces and dairy products is a major concern for Town of Rutherfordton sewer system. When not disposed of properly, fats, oils, and grease builds up in the sewer system constricting flow, which can cause sewer back-ups into homes and overflow discharges onto streets. It can also interfere with sewage treatment processes at the Town's wastewater treatment plant. Grease is the number one culprit of sewer pipe overflows and backups. Sewer overflows and backups can cause health hazards, harm the environment and damage your home. Grease gets into the sewer from household drains and poorly maintained grease interceptors at restaurants or other businesses.

Grease in Sewer Line

Fats, oils, and grease buildup in sewer lines has many harmful and costly effects. Sewer backups into homes create a health hazard as well as an unpleasant mess that can cost hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars to clean up.

In addition to problems caused by cooking oils, petroleum-based oils can also cause sewer-related problems. Town of Rutherfordton residents may not be aware of or understand their role in these sewer-related problems or pollution, but they can do a lot to help eliminate Fats, oils, and grease, and other contaminants from the sewer system. For example: A gallon of oil poured down a sewer drain could contaminate up to one million gallons of water.

Be sure to properly dispose of cooking grease, by pouring fats and oils from turkey, bacon, etc. into an empty can and throwing the can away. Please do not pour oil and grease down drains or toilets.


Sewer line


  • It's okay to pour grease down the drain if I run hot water with it.
    Myth Busted: This only moves the grease further down the sewer line. Eventually the water will cool and the grease will begin to solidify and coat the pipes.
  • It's okay to pour liquid oils down the drain.
    Myth Busted: Liquid cooking oils float on water and easily adhere to sewer pipes. The oily film can collect food particles and other solids that will create a blockage.
  • As long as I can use the garbage disposal, it's okay to put fat, oil, and grease down the drain.
    Myth Busted: Using the garbage disposal only grinds particles up before passing them into the sewer pipes. It does not prevent build up or blockages.
  • If I use dish soap while pouring the fat, oil, and grease down the drain it will break up and allow it to pass through the pipes.
    Myth Busted: Dish soap only temporarily breaks up the fat, oil, and grease. Further down the sewer line, all of that grease, oil, and fat will begin to congeal and cause a blockage.

Dos and Don'ts

  • Do... Pour oil and grease into an empty container, such as an old can, and allow it to cool completely. Once it has solidified, dispose of it in the trash.
  • Do... Wipe down pots, pans, and utensils with a disposable towel or plastic scraper prior to washing.
  • Do... Scrape food scraps into the trash.
  • Do... Use a strainer in the sink to collect excess food particles.
    For oil, grease, and fat that do not solidify, mix with an absorbent material until all the moisture has been absorbed. Then dispose of it in the trash.
  • Don't... Use a garbage disposal. Grinding food up before rinsing it down the drain does not remove fats, oils, and grease, it just makes the particles smaller.
  • Don't... Pour cooking oil, pan drippings, grease, salad dressings, or sauces down the sink.
  • Don't... Use cloth towels or rags to scrape plates or clean greasy or oily dishware. When you wash them, the grease will wind up in the sewer.
  • Don't... Run water over greasy dishes or pans.
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