Fats, Oils, and Grease

What do bacon, ice cream, and peanut butter all have in common? They are more than just tasty treats. They are also sources of fats, oil, and grease, also known as FOG. While fats, oil, and grease add extra flavor to your food, pouring FOG down the drain can leave a real mess in West Palm Beach’s sewer collection system.

This forces a backup that leaves a nasty surprise in the bathroom. First the tub starts filling; once that overflows it bubbles up through the toilet too. Because many of her neighbors are also unaware of FOG prevention habits, the same thing happens on a larger scale affecting a neighborhood stream.
FOG has contributed to a significant blockage in the sewer line that parallels the stream. Once the wastewater can no longer flow through the pipe, it surcharges in the manhole, gushing out and running into the stream.

FOG creates clogs that can back up sewage into your street, yard, or home and can even send it spilling into a neighborhood stream! Think of it this way––if it can clog arteries in the body, then it will probably clog the sewer pipe. Fortunately, clearing up FOG is as easy as doing a few simple things around the kitchen.


Fats typically come from meat and dairy sources but can also come from plant sources, such as nut butters. It is usually in solid form at room temperature and can be thrown directly into the trash.

Placing these foods in the garbage disposal only reduces the size of the food, not the likelihood of creating a clog. If you’re not sure if something has fat in it, check the nutrition label.
Unclogging Strategy: Place fats directly in the trash can or another container to put in the trash can for proper disposal.


Oils comes from a variety of sources to include plants such as: vegetable oil, canola oil, olive oil, corn oil, etc. It may be used as a topping on food, such as salads or sandwiches or used to cook food, such as deep frying. It remains liquid at room temperature; used oil should be poured into a can or jar before disposal. If it is poured down the drain, oil can coat pipes and get into any nooks and crannies, creating a slick surface that makes it easier for fats and grease to stick to it.


Grease occurs when fats from food melt under heat such as frying, boiling and baking, etc. Grease is deceptive because it is a liquid after cooking, but eventually cools into a solid. Pouring it down the drain means that at some point, it will cool on the pipes in the collection system, harden, and then start a clog.
Unclogging Strategy: Pour liquid grease into a grease can or other container with a lid and place in trash can once it has cooled. Running hot water over greasy cookware in the sink only pushes it into the pipes where it hardens. Read the FAQs for more ideas

Unclogging Strategy: Pour used oil into a jar or can with a lid before placing in the trash can. Hot water and soap do not eliminate oils; they will eventually reform in pipes.