Education / Tips

Disposing of Grease

Each year, sewer overflows occur in the City of Charleston due to the improper disposal of Fats, Oils and Grease in the kitchen drains. Grease congeals on sewer pipes, which causes wastewater to flow back into homes, businesses, neighborhoods or directly into waterways.

Proper Way to Dispose of Grease

  • Allow grease to cool to a safe temperature after cooking.
  • Use a container with a re-sealable lid.
  • Pour the cooled oil  and grease into the container.
  • Place lid on container and dispose in the garbage.
  • Scrape or wipe cookware using a paper towel or spatula into the garbage before washing.


Do's and Don'ts

Things you should DO:

  • Scrape excess grease in a container and dispose of in the garbage
  • Place food scraps in waste containers or garbage bags for disposal with solid wastes; encourage the scraping of ware prior to washing.
  • Place a wastebasket in the bathroom to dispose of solid wastes such as those noted below.

Things you should NOT DO:

  • Pour fats, oils, or grease down the drain.
  • Use toilet as a wastebasket.
  • Use the sewer as a means to dispose of food scraps.


Items that should not be disposed of in the sewer system:

  • Cooking Grease and Oil
  • Food Debris
  • Diapers
  • Cotton Balls
  • Kitty Litter
  • Acne Pads
  • Dental Floss
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Condoms
  • Bandages
  • Paper Towels
  • Sanitary Wipes
  • Dirt, Rocks, and Stone
  • Wood
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Rags
  • Plastic
  • Drinking Straws
  • Tooth Picks


Preventing Leaks and Floods in your Home

Your sewer charges are based upon the water usage in your home. Therefore, to prevent unnecessarily high sewer charges, you can take preventative measures in your home, such as those listed below, to reduce the chance of having water related issues, such as leaks or flooding.

  • Check around and under appliances, such as the dishwasher and refrigerator, for signs of leaking water.
  • Replace washing machine hoses every three to five years to prevent them from leaking.
  • Check water heaters for rust, which may signal a problem. Make sure your water heater has a pan and drain under it. Most water heaters last eight to 12 years, so if yours is that age, you should get it checked to make sure it is functioning properly.
  • Check sink, ice machine, and dishwasher water lines for leaks and other damage or deterioration.
  • Consider buying an automatic water valve shut-off device, to use in case of emergency.
  • Remove garden hoses and turn off the water to exterior taps in the winter. If there is no exterior cut-off valve, insulate the tap.