Make it Thanksgiving Day for Your Drains and Disposal

Thanksgiving is one of those holidays that revolves around the preparation and serving of lots of delicious food. Remember—the more food you prepare, the more likely you will be to put some extra strains on your kitchen plumbing. Following are some items you should never put down your drains—at Thanksgiving or any other time:

1. Coffee grounds. The grounds from the coffee you will almost certainly serve to house- and dinner guests swell in your drains, disposal and pipes and cause more plumbing problems than any other substance.

2. Grease. The grease from your cooked turkey or other roast, the oil you cook in or put into salad dressings, condiments and mayonnaise, the fat from meat trimmings, poultry skin, cheese, ice cream and shortening for those pie crusts all can damage your plumbing, especially when they form “fatbergs”—grease in its various forms mixed with other materials.

3. Large Bones. Bad for drains and disposals.

4. Shrimp and other seafood shells. Shells from the shrimp you serve as an appetizer are probably okay for drains, but they can wrap around disposal blades and jam the operation.

5. Food scraps. Food leavings, like pasta, rice, stringy vegetables, fruit peels or discarded sections and fruit pits can absorb water in drains, swell up and stick to other substances to form clogs. Fibrous husks like corn or onion skins can wrap around disposal blades just like shrimp shells.

6. Potato peels. In the volume you’ll need for a holiday feast, they form a sticky paste that clings to all your plumbing.

7. Produce stickers from fruits and vegetables. Those cute little stickers on your sweet potatoes, vegetables and fruits get stuck in drains, in waste water treatment plant pumps and hoses, and in screens and filters.

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