What Not to Put Down the Drain to Avoid Clogs

Is a clogged drain flooding your shower? RDH Plumbing, Sewer, & Drain Specialist can help when you call (908) 774-8751.

Clogged drains cause disgusting backups that result in damage and health issues. If you’re wondering what not to put down the drain, keep reading. As the top-rated drain cleaning company in Rockaway, NJ, our team at RDH Plumbing, Sewer, & Drain Specialist can efficiently clear clogs and prevents backups.


You might think eggshells don’t present a problem to your drains because of their soft and crumbly texture. However, the sharp edges can latch onto other materials coming down the drain, eventually accumulating enough substance to block your pipes. For instance, grease and fat can easily capture crushed eggshells, creating a more solid mass within the pipes.


Draining grease, fat, and oil from cooking is an easy disposal method, but once it cools, it solidifies on the walls of the pipe, narrowing and slowly blocking them. This also makes it easier for other substances to lodge in the pipes.

To dispose of grease, fat, and oils, let them cool and then throw them in the garbage.


Even if you throw the flour down the drain while it’s dry, when it mixes with water, it forms a thick paste and has the same effect as grease and fat. Whether you’ve mixed the flour or not, always throw it in the garbage rather than down the drain.


Not draining medication is more about public health than preventing a clog, but it’s still an essential rule. When you throw medication down the drain, it returns to the community’s drinking water and causes serious health problems. The best way to dispose of unused medication is by taking them to the pharmacy or police.


Many people overlook the produce stickers on apples, bananas, and other fruits. The stickers aren’t dissolvable and become stuck in the pipes or screens in your plumbing. Always remove produce stickers before washing the fruit.

Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds are number one on the list of what not to put down the drain. However, it’s also one of the most common mistakes homeowners make because draining coffee grounds is so convenient.

Coffee grounds are great for composting, but if that’s not an option, always throw the grounds in the garbage. Remember to strain out the bottom of your cup or coffee pot to avoid the leftover grounds from entering the drain while you rinse and clean up. It may seem like minuscule amounts, but it adds up over time.

‘Flushable’ Toiletries

Flushable products are more of a marketing tactic than actual product development. While flushable wipes can make it down your toilet without clogging it, they never fully break down. Eventually, they’ll clog your plumbing system or back up your sewer line for a nasty surprise.

Many homeowners also have problems with flushable kitty litter. To maintain extra protection against drain clogs, practice caution and dispose of flushable products in the garbage.


Since latex doesn’t break down in water, it makes an excellent material for condoms. However, it also means when you flush them, they clog your drain, which is the best-case scenario. They often end up in the ocean, where marine life chokes on them.

Cleaning Products

While cleaning products are liquid and rarely clog your drain (except soap scum), the harmful chemicals they contain have the same effects as medications. To care for the environment and your neighborhood, never wash chemical cleaning products down the drain.

Paper Products

Paper products include cotton balls, paper towels, and feminine hygiene products. Toilet paper is the only paper product you should ever flush.

Expanding Food

Some foods, like rice and noodles, expand when they get wet. While putting food down the drain is OK in some situations, these foods easily clog your drain when they mix with water. Flour-based pasta, in particular, forms a sticky paste in your pipes.


Like cleaning supplies and medication, the prohibition against sending paint down the drain has more to do with public health than preventing clogs.

Call RDH Plumbing, Sewer, & Drain Specialist to Unclog Your Drain

Now you know what not to put down the drain. If you can avoid all these materials, you have a good chance of never clogging your drains. However, when problems occur, our team at RDH Plumbing, Sewer, & Drain Specialist can fix them with expert knowledge and renowned customer service.

When you have smelly kitchen drains, RDH Plumbing, Sewer, & Drain Specialist can help. Call (908) 774-8751 to book an appointment.

Author Bio:
Rob Hernandez

At RDH Plumbing, Sewer, and Drain Specialists, we will take care of all your plumbing needs. We want you to be comfortable in your home. We will take all the stress away. We take great pride in our work and make sure we keep your home clean and that you are well taken care of.

RDH Plumbing Specialist Van

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