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“I wanna talk to you about FOG. That’s Fats, Oils and Grease, shortcake, and it’s real destructive, see. Think you can just dump it in the sink? Incorrectamundo, my friend! When you put FOG down the drain, you can cause some major damage to your plumbing and home.”

“Remember the grease container that Grandma kept on the stove? She was one smart lady. However, no need to buy one. When you’ve got a bunch of grease, dump it in an empty vegetable or soup can and put a lid on it. Then put in the freezer. When it’s full, remove the lid and throw the can away. Start all over with another empty can. No mess, no worries. No plumbing problems.”

Down the Drain FOG, also known as fats, oils and grease, is the No. 1 cause of sewer backups and overflows. FOG, a byproduct of food preparation and cooking, includes meats, vegetable oils, butter, margarine, soups, gravies, sauces, salad dressing, pastas and other fatty, greasy or oily products that are insoluble in water.

When poured down the drain or flushed down a toilet, FOG hardens into a clog, which leads to sewer backups into homes or businesses. FOG clogs sewer pipelines much like it does arteries.

These FOG-caused blockages in private lateral lines can lead to costly plumbing repairs for property owners not to mention a nasty mess to clean up.

FOG in the City’s wastewater mains is also a costly and preventable repair. Find out how to report a water emergency and more about sewer backups here.

Click here to watch FOGzie’s video.

FOG myths

FOG poured down the drain will eventually cause a nasty sewer backup in your home or backyard, someone else’s property or in the city’s main. Wherever a FOG clog may form, it will cause a great deal of hassle, headache and cost. Likewise, someone else’s FOG may form a clog near your property.

More FOG disposal tips

Other pipe cloggers

Wipes clog pipes

Disposable doesn’t mean flushable.  Cleaning wipes and baby wipes do not dissolve.  But they do get stuck in the sewer pipes and sewer pumping system. 

Be kind to your plumbing.  Throw used wipes and other paper products – other than toilet paper – in the trash.  Even if the label reads “flushable,” it’s safer and more environmentally correct to keep them out of the wastewater system. Plus hiring a plumber to unclog your paper-stuffed pipes can be costly.  This cost doesn’t cover cleaning up the sewage that may have backed up into the house.

The toilet is not a trashcan

Some things don’t belong in the toilet, like rags, paper towels, cotton swabs, food wrappers, clothing labels, disposable toilet brushes, plastic, latex and personal hygiene items, kitty litter, cigarette butts, hair and underwear.  Paper and trash is the No. 2 cause of sewer backups.  Remember: You plug it. You pay for it. 

The root of the problem

The No. 3 cause of sewer backups is roots.  Tree roots are a common cause of broken pipes and sewer backups.  Roots seek water, find it in your pipelines and continue to grow, causing blockages.  When planting trees and shrubs, consider doing so away from your property’s lateral plumbing lines.  Also, avoid planting on easements.   

FOG disposal by restaurants

“Take it from a cool guy like me,” said FOGZIE.  “Dispose of Fats, Oil and Grease the right way, and you can prevent major damage to the restaurant’s plumbing and sewer backups in your customers’ homes.” 

More ways to tackle grease

Stop the FOG, and you’ll:

Additional resources