7 Things You Should Never Put Down Your Drain 

You probably know that you shouldn’t put oil or grease down your drain, as these substances can build up in the pipes and cause clogs. But there are many other things you shouldn’t put down your drain, from hair to grease and even natural toothpaste, so it’s important to know exactly what should—and shouldn’t—go into the sink or tub drain at home. What goes down the drain must eventually go somewhere, right? The truth is, there are certain things that you should never put down your drain that can cause serious damage to your plumbing system and prevent your drains from working properly.

Here are seven things you should never put down your drain if you want to keep things flowing smoothly. 

1) Food Waste

Many of us simply don’t know what to do with food scraps, such as leftover bits of veggies, eggshells and coffee grounds. While composting is an excellent option for many of these items, some need to be disposed of in a different way.

If you live in an area with a water filtration system, food scraps can be taken directly to your local plant and used as fertilizer. If not, put them down your sink drain—never put garbage like garbage down your drain!

2) Grease

No matter how tempting it may be to pour fat and grease down your kitchen drain, you should never do it. Not only does grease not break down easily in water (meaning it can clog up your pipes), but cooking fats have high levels of triglycerides that create a very attractive environment for bacteria.

3) Hair 

Unless it’s attached to your head, you shouldn’t be putting hair down your drain. Hair can get tangled in your pipes and potentially clog them. Instead, collect hair with a mesh laundry bag and throw it in a trash bin. As an alternative, you can use reusable hair ties or rubber bands instead of traditional ponytail holders that easily shed their synthetic bristles into drains. 

4) Disposable Diapers

Believe it or not, disposable diapers make their way down drains pretty frequently. When these diapers are dumped in bathtubs and sinks, they can turn into a soggy mess that expands to take up extra space in your pipes.

This can lead to clogs—and all sorts of expensive plumbing headaches. Even if you don’t have a baby, if you’re throwing away disposable diapers at home, avoid flushing them down your toilet.

5) Nail Polish

Unlike oil, nail polish doesn’t break down when you add it to your drains. The chemicals in nail polish will harden and clog your pipes over time, making it harder for water to pass through. Keep all unused nail polish in a container or bag until you’re ready to use it—then dispose of it properly.

6) Napkins and Baby Wipes

Think of a drain as a mini-sewer. Flushing things like paper towels, toilet paper, tampons and facial tissue down your toilet is gross for one reason: It doesn’t break down easily. But it’s also gross because flushing those items can cause clogs and backups. If you want to be a good neighbor, don’t treat your sink like a trash can. 

7) Soap Scum

Drains can clog from soap scum buildup, and that’s especially true if you wash a lot of dishes. That’s why it’s important to use a quality water softener—not detergent—when washing your dishes. In addition to avoiding soap scum build up, you’ll also want to be sure that you don’t use products like bleach or vinegar down your drain; these products are harsh on pipe materials and could cause leaks or other problems over time.


If you never want to deal with a clogged drain again, it’s best to avoid putting the above mentioned things down your drain. Many of these products can negatively affect your pipes and cause serious problems if left in for too long or in large quantities. To unclog your drains as quickly and efficiently as possible, consult Bulldog Rooter.

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