How to Properly Dispose of Cooking Oil and Grease

You’ve just cooked a fantastic meal that your whole family has enjoyed. You’ve done the dishes and disposed of the leftover food, but staring at you from across the counter is a pan full of cooking oil.

If you’re suddenly hit by a moment of panic and confusion about how to get rid of this oil, then this article is for you. You should always make sure to dispose of cooking oil and grease sensibly. Doing it the wrong way can lead to a horrid plumbing emergency

Here’s your guide to what you should and shouldn’t do when disposing of oil and grease. 

Hazards Of Improper Disposal

When you have cooking oil to dispose of, you might be tempted just to pour it down the drain and be done with it.

Improper disposal of oil can have severe effects on both infrastructure and wildlife. Grease poured down the drain is a leading cause of nasty fatbergs. Fatbergs are buildups of fat and grease within sewer systems that can grow large enough to stop the whole system from working. 

If the grease has been thrown outside, it can potentially harm local wildlife or taint water supplies if it comes into contact with them.

What You Shouldn’t Do

Before we look at the right way to get rid of cooking oil, let’s look at what you shouldn’t do. 

These two disposal methods are unfortunately quite common and can cause all sorts of problems for drains, gardens, wildlife, and sewer systems.

Pouring It Down The Drain

This is how a lot of people dispose of their cooking oil. When you pour it down a drain, the fat begins to cool, thicken and harden. As it hardens, it causes clogged pipes that require costly cleanup efforts.

When you have grease in pipes or down the drain, it’s best to call a professional plumber that can clean the drain for you. 

Throwing It In The Yard

You may also be tempted to throw the oil out into the yard. That is another bad idea. 

Cooking grease can be toxic to both plants and wildlife. Additionally, when you toss your cooking oil out into the hard, it may eventually make its way into the sewer system and cause a raft of problems.

How To Dispose Of Cooking Oil Properly

So what is the best way to get rid of cooking oil? It’s not as difficult as it may seem, and you have a few options for disposal. 

Let’s take a look at those.

Store It And Throw Out With Your Household Waste

This is the easiest way to dispose of oil and avoid the problem of putting grease in drain systems. 

Once the oil has cooled, pour it into a container that you can securely seal. You can use bottles, empty milk cartons, or anything else that you can securely store the cooking oil. All you need to do then is throw the container out with the rest of your trash.

Use Something To Absorb The Grease

The other option you have is absorbing the oil in another material and then throwing it away. This is a great way to avoid worrying about the oil leaking or spilling from a container. 

You can use paper towels, sawdust, or even flour to do this. Once the oil has been absorbed, you can simply throw the whole lot out. 

Reach Out To The Plumbing Pros

Of course, the best way to avoid plumbing disasters is to dispose of cooking oil properly. Doing so will help minimize negative effects on our household, your neighbourhood, and the environment.  However, we know that some plumbing issues are hard to avoid.

If you live in Hamilton and have a problem with your drains and pipes, reach out to the expert team at Pitton Plumbing & Heating. We’ve been serving Hamilton and Southwestern Ontario since 1983. 

Check out services page to see what we can help you with. We’ll be happy to assist you with all your plumbing needs!