Southern Maryland’s Premier Heating, Cooling & Plumbing Service Company


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How many times have you been busy cooking and don’t want to walk over to the trashcan to dispose of some food waste? Or, how often do you toss a little bit of trash into the sink because it is there and it’s convenient? We’ve all done it, but we all shouldn’t.

Putting the wrong thing down your sink can cause it to clog, rendering that fixture unusable until you get it fixed. Or, a foreign object down the drain could damage the pipes or garbage disposal, leading to a costly breakage.

Here is a quick list of 9 things you should never put down your sink, drain, or toilet:

  1. Bits of paper and plastic: The sink is not a trashcan, not even for little tiny bits of trash that seem too small to be harmful. The biggest paper culprits that wind up down sinks and forming a clog are stickers from fruits and vegetables.
  2. Coffee grounds: When you empty your coffeemaker in the morning, do not overturn the pot in the sink and try to wash down the coffee grounds. Always use the trashcan instead.
  3. Cotton balls: What a versatile thing a cotton ball is. It can help with makeup application and removal, first-aid, arts and crafts, and so forth. But no matter the reason why you want to dispose of a cotton ball, don’t put it into the sink.
  4. Eggshells: A big drain clog offender in the morning is an eggshell. It might seem fine to toss one down the sink while you are preparing breakfast, but it can and will cause a clog. Eggshells are shaped quite well to get lodged into the drain. They are also surprisingly durable to corrosion, meaning they won’t dissolve any time soon from water exposure.
  5. Grease, fat, and oil: You should dispose of any grease, fat, or oil from your cooking in the trash. In particular, store it in a disposable, sealable container before placing that in the garbage. Just to be clear, butter falls into the category, too.
  6. Household chemicals: Not only is pouring household cleaners, pesticides, and more down the drain unsafe, it is also illegal. Check the label of any household chemicals to see how to properly dispose of it. We guarantee it will never say “just pour it down the nearest sink.”
  7. Kitty litter: When you are cleaning up after Fluffy and Mittens, don’t try to take a shortcut and put their waste into the toilet. Kitty litter is notorious for clogging toilets and causing hazardous backflow. Even kitty litter that has been branded as “flushable” is often not. It is best to stay away from these products and stick with putting cat litter in the garbage.
  8. Menstrual hygiene products: Flushing a menstrual hygiene product is a fast way to cause a bad clog in your toilet’s pipework. Some menstrual hygiene products are even designed to expand when damp, so they are practically made for causing a plumbing disaster.
  9. Pasta: Did you know that your favorite pasta might also be your worst nightmare if it goes down the stink? Pasta and other starchy carbohydrates like rice and grains resist the garbage disposal’s blades and disintegration in water. In other words, if they go down the sink, they won’t be broken up into bits and they will cling to the sides of the pipe for a long time.

Did one of these objects or something else end up down your sink? Is your plumbing worse for wear now? Get it fixed and fast by calling (301) 200-5248 to speak with Boothe’s Heating, Air & Plumbing. We serve customers throughout Southern Maryland and stay ready to quickly react to any plumbing disaster.

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