What Shouldn’t Go Down Your Drain

woman plunging her kitchen sink to unclog it

Your household drains are like magic. They dispose of so many things and then you never have to deal with them again, right? Wrong. Our messes are never just ‘gone’. Our messes are moved from the sink to the drain piping in your home to the city piping. The reality is that what we send down the drain can cause many problems that we sometimes don’t realize. Take note of the following list regarding things that should not go down the drain so you have the knowledge to help keep our sewage systems and wildlife safe.

Let’s start with your kitchen sink. This list includes all sinks but the majority will pertain to your kitchen sink.

Grease & Fats:

The heated fat from food like bacon, butter, and other food items cools when it goes down the sink and returns to its solid form and clogs your sink. Meat trimmings will also clog the drain.


Cooking oils like olive oil or things like salad dressings or various condiments will clog your drain and are bad for septic systems.

Coffee Grounds:

Most people think that coffee grounds drain easily. Coffee grounds will clog your drain quickly and if it is in combination with grease it could cause a serious plumbing issue for you.


It seems safe to say that eggshells are a NO-GO for your household drain but, many people think that eggshells are safe for a garbage disposal. Even after eggshells run through a garbage disposal they are still large enough to stick to the walls of your plumbing and cause an issue.


You know that sticker you peel off when you wash your produce. That sticker is sticky and clings to the walls of your plumbing causing a blockage and a place for other materials to stick to.

The kitchen drain is notorious for clogging, but the toilet is mistakenly used for quite a few non-flushables and can cause some serious and expensive issues.

Paper Products:

You can flush toilet paper. That is it! Paper towels will clog your toilet. “Flushable” wipes will clog your toilet if your household sewer system already has issues like grease and fat buildup. Cotton balls are the same. Don’t flush them.

Cat Litter:

This may seem like an odd thing to flush but companies are releasing a “flushable” cat litter that should in fact not be flushed. Cats feces can carry parasites that survive a waste treatment plant and end up a possible threat to marine life. Not only that, but cat litter should not be flushed anyways. It can latch on to any other obstructions in your pipe and cause a serious and expensive issue.

Chemicals & Medications:

Paint, medications, cleaning products and car fluids should NOT be flushed or washed down the drain. These items should be disposed of properly at a hazardous waste facility. Your medications can be thrown in the trash but it is a good idea to seal them with something beforehand.

If you are having a plumbing issue in Idaho Falls, give A Pro Plumbing a call.