It’s that time of the year again: the time where you and your family get a ton of sticky, sweet, and delicious candy. Regardless of how much you get, it’s inevitable that some of it will end up in the trash or in the sink. Most candies are fine going down the sink, but some Halloween treats should always go in the trash — if you’re not planning on eating them, that is!
Protect your drains and avoid flushing these seasonal food items and candies down the drain and garbage disposal.
Nuts are a common ingredient in a few popular candy bars, including Snickers and Peanut M&M’s. A few nuts won’t be that much of a problem, but consider this: how is peanut butter made? A few nuts were ground down and spun to make a thick and sticky paste. The same thing can happen in your garbage disposal — the nuts, mixed with other components of the candy, and create a large sticky lump that can clog your pipes.
Peanut Butter, or a thick peanut butter-like mix, can be a pain to clean out and may not be easily flushed out with drain cleaners. Try to limit the amount of peanut candy that goes in your sink and instead, put it to better use. Like eating it!
Pumpkin and Fibrous Vegetables
It’s October, which means pumpkin season is in full force. Whether you’re carving them, using them as decorations, feeding them to animals, or eating them yourselves, you should avoid putting any of them down the drain.
Pumpkins are extremely fibrous on the inside. While they may feel slimy to the touch, that doesn’t mean the guts will slide down your drain without any problem. Actually, the opposite is true. The long and slimy strands can easily get caught in your drain and catch more debris as it gets flushed down the sink.
The slimy gunk is ideal for clogging sink drains. It’s stringy and sticky when wet, and when it dries, it hardens into perfect choke-points for drains. So avoid carving pumpkins in the sink and instead opt to do it outside or in the garage, with newspaper laid down on the ground.
Pumpkin guts can also get entangled in and damage garbage disposals. The same goes for veggies like celery and rhubarb. Throw long, stringy stalks straight in the trash to keep the fibers from causing a problem, but don’t worry about small pieces. When chopped up, the fibers are small enough to not cause a problem.
Also, don’t try to flush them down the toilet! The same kind of clog will form, but it will be further down the piping system. Instead, put them in the trash or a compost bin.
We know it’s not a seasonal thing, but sometimes you need an extra boost during the evening to help you keep up with the kids during trick-or-treating. While most nights end early, Halloween is definitely a longer-than-average feeling day. Sometimes you just need a little pick-me-up to help you get through it.
Even though you’re tired, avoid putting those coffee grounds down the sink when you’re done with them. That’s because they’re hard, which can damage your garbage disposal, and they’re prone to clumping together in the drain. They will likely continue to build up over time and catch more and more food as it gets washed down the sink, thus resulting in a large amount of build up and an eventual clog.
For a list of more things you should never flush down your drain, see our past blog on the topic.
Why Is a Clogged Sink Bad?
You may be asking why it’s so bad to clog a sink for a day or two until you can get it fixed. Sure, it stinks and the water isn’t going away, but that’s harmless, right?
Wrong. A clogged sink results in a slow drain, if any drain at all, which builds pressure in your pipe. This pressure, though not often enough to lead to a burst pipe, can cause cracks and leaks.
Leaks are always a concern — the water can quickly damage your walls and floors, as well as cause potential hazardous mold.
Water sitting in your sink could also attract pests and ignite irritations caused by allergies and asthma, especially when the water is contaminated with food particles and gives off an odor. While these types of issues typically only occur with severe clogs, it can become a major health concern if it does happen.
What Do I Do If My Drain is Clogged?
If your drain is clogged or if you notice something unusual about it, such as loud noises, scrapping or bangs when you run the garbage disposal, it’s time to call a professional, like Economy Plumbing Service.
Economy Plumbing Services serves all of Tucson and the surrounding areas including Vail, Sahuarita, Green Valley, Marana, 3 Points, Catalina, Saddlebrook, and Oro Valley. The business is family-owned and operated and ready to help you when you need it. If you’re in the area, give them a call!